Budget deficit up 25.1% in first 2months of fiscal year
WASHINGTON— The U.S. government’s deficit in the first two months of the budget year totaled $429.3 billion, 25.1% higher than the same period a year ago as spending to deal with the COVID pandemic soared while tax revenues fell.
The deficit — the shortfall between what the government collects in taxes and what it spends — reflected an 8.9% jump in outlays, to $886.6 billion, and a 2.9% decline in tax revenues, to $457.3 billion.
Spending for the first two months of the budget year, which begins Oct. 1, also set a record, while the deficit over the same period was also a record.
The government’s deficit for the budget year that ended Sept. 30 was a record-shattering $3.1 trillion, fueled by the trilliondollar-plus spending measures Congress passed in the spring to combat the economic downturn triggered by the pandemic. The recession, which has seen millions of people lose their jobs, has meant a drop in tax revenues.