U.S. Posts Smallest March Federal Budget Deficit Since 2000

Cumulative U.S. Budget Deficits
The U.S. posted its smallest March budget deficit in 14 years as an improving labor market boosted tax receipts and federal government spending declined from a year earlier.

Spending exceeded revenue by $36.9 billion last month, compared with a $106.5 billion deficit in March 2013, the Treasury Department said today in Washington. The median estimate in a Bloomberg survey of 18 economists called for a $36 billion shortfall.

“The economy is growing, so the tax receipts are up,” said Paul Edelstein, director of U.S. financial economics at IHS Global Insight Inc. in Lexington, Massachusetts. “We’ve also cut back significantly on expenditures.”

A report last week showed the number of employees on company payrolls surpassed the pre-recession peak for the first time in March, a sign progress in the job market will help propel tax receipts into the Treasury.

Corporate tax receipts may get a boost from a pickup in the pace of growth. Strength in the U.S. this year and next will help the world economy withstand weaker recoveries in emerging markets, an April 8 report from the International Monetary Fund showed.

Today’s Treasury report showed revenue increased 16 percent to $215.8 billion last month from $186 billion in March 2013. Spending totaled $252.7 billion, down 13.6 percent from $292.5 billion a year ago, today’s report showed.

Read the whole story at Bloomberg

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