Jul 11, 2019

U.S. budget deficit up 23% over first 9 months of fiscal year

Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

The U.S. budget deficit hit $747.1 billion over the first nine months of the fiscal year, a 23% increase from the same point in 2018, Bloomberg reports.

Why it matters: The deficit has been widening as the country approaches its debt limit — which Congress has not moved to raise thus far. Per Bloomberg, the Bipartisan Policy Center earlier this week warned that there is a "significant risk" for a breach of the debt ceiling in September, revising its prior prediction of October or November.

By the numbers, per the Treasury Department:

  • Federal spending hit $3.36 trillion in the span from October to June — a 6.6% year-over-year jump.
  • Meanwhile, revenue rose by 2.7% to $2.61 trillion.

The state of play: While President Trump's tariffs provided a small uptick in revenue, that influx was washed away by increased federal spending spending and the administration's tax cuts.

Go deeper... Chart: How the U.S. budget deficit has fluctuated since the 1980s

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White House projects $1 trillion deficit for 2019

Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

The White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) projected in its midyear review Monday that the federal deficit would surpass $1 trillion this year.

Why it matters: It's the first time the U.S. deficit has exceeded the $1 trillion level since the 4-year period following the Great Recession. When President Trump was a presidential candidate, he promised to wipe out the deficit and also the entire federal debt, which has surpassed $22 trillion.

Go deeperArrowJul 16, 2019

Mnuchin pushes Congress to act on debt ceiling

Steven Mnuchin. Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin on Friday requested that Congress increase the debt ceiling before its summer recess, suggesting the Treasury could run out of cash sooner than expected.

Why it matters: Mnuchin now says the Treasury Department could run out of cash in early September, before Congress reconvenes — a projection that beats the increasingly frantic predictions of the Bipartisan Policy Center.

Go deeperArrowJul 12, 2019

House votes to suspend debt ceiling through 2021

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

The House voted 284-149 on Thursday to pass a budget that suspends the debt ceiling through 2021 — allowing the government to borrow money for 2 more years — and raises spending caps by about $320 billion.

The big picture: The federal debt exceeded $22 trillion in February and the Congressional Budget Office projects it to reach "unprecedented levels" over the next 30 years if current laws go unchanged. The federal deficit has grown 23% this fiscal year. Thursday's deal passes the buck on the next federal debt showdown until after the 2020 elections.

Go deeperArrowJul 25, 2019