JAKARTA (TheInsiderStories) – The United States (US) budget gap narrowed to US$200 billion in August from $214 billion in the corresponding month of the previous year, bringing the fiscal year to date deficit soared past $1 trillion, compared with $898 billion in the comparable period the year earlier, according to data released by the Treasury Department on Thursday (09/12).
The total shortfall rose to nearly $1.07 trillion, the first time that level has been eclipsed in seven years, thanks to a difference between revenue and expenses of more than $214.1 billion in August. The government last saw that large of a fiscal deficit in 2012, when the gap was nearly $1.1 trillion.
The Treasury reports that total outlays fell 1 percent from a year earlier to $428 billion, with social security accounting for $88 billion, medicare for $85 billion, and national defense for $64 billion.
Then, health for $49 billion, income security for $45 billion, net interest for $35 billion, veterans’ benefits & services for $25 billion, transportation for $10 billion, education for $9 billion and the remaining expenses for $18 billion.
Meanwhile, total receipts rose 4 percent to $228 billion, with individual income taxes accounting for $106 billion, social insurance & retirement for $96 billion, miscellaneous for $11 billion, excise taxes for $8 billion, customs duties for $7 billion and estate & gift taxes for $2 billion.
“So the deficit for the fiscal year to date was $1.067 trillion, compared with $898 billion in the comparable period the year earlier,” the Treasury writes.
“When adjusted for calendar effects, the deficit for August was $141 billion compared with an adjusted deficit of $146 billion in August 2018,” it adds.
Thursday’s report comes less than two months after the White House Office of Management and Budget forecast the federal deficit would exceed $1 trillion this year. The national debt now stands at $22.5 trillion, up 13 percent since President Donald Trump took office in January 2017.
During his presidential campaign, Trump promised economic growth that would easily take care of the tax cuts and new spending he planned. His 2017 tax break for corporations and individuals has helped contribute to a deficit that has grown from $584.6 billion in 2016.
Revenue has accelerated slightly in 2019 to about $280 billion a month, but so have expenditures, which are averaging $377 billion a month, or about $25 billion a month more than in 2018. Last year closed with a $779 billion deficit.
However, the deficit as a percentage of gross domestic product has contracted significantly over the past several years, from a peak of 9.8 percent in 2009 to about 5 percent now.
Written by Lexy Nantu, Email: email@example.com