The recently-concluded fiscal year 2019 continues to show a widening shortfall between federal government outlays and revenues, notes a new report issued by the Congressional Budget Office.
In its Summary for Fiscal Year 2019, the CBO notes that the deficit for the fiscal year ending on September 30 amounted to $984 billion.
That figure is up by $205 billion over fiscal year 2018.
In fact, according to the CBO, the national deficit has steadfastly increased every year since fiscal year 2014, when it stood at $442 billion.
During that same period of time, outlays have jumped from $3.5 trillion to more than $4.4 trillion for the most recent fiscal year.
Despite the increased shortfall, notes the report, income taxes withheld from employee paychecks increased by more than $3 billion, with receipts from payroll social insurance taxes up by $72 billion, and corporate income taxes increased by $26 billion.
At the same time, spending on Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid, identified in the report as the “three largest entitlement programs,” rose respectively by $56 billion, $39 billion, and $20 billion.
“Combined outlays for the three programs exceeded $2 trillion for the first time,” notes the report, “equal to 47 percent of federal spending and 9.9 percent of Gross Domestic Product in 2019.”
Department of Defense spending additionally rose by $48 billion, “increasing for the third consecutive year.”
In this category, operation and maintenance, research and development, procurement, and military personnel spending were all up.
Continues the report: “As was true in both 2017 and 2018, growth in spending by the Air Force was the fastest (10 percent), with growth for the Navy (7 percent) and the Army (6 percent) somewhat slower.”
In looking at the latest numbers, Bloomberg reports new concerns that “President Donald Trump’s budget plans will lead to an acceleration in the national debt.”
Notes the Washington Examiner: “The federal budget deficit is big by historical standards, and federal debt is expected to rise significantly in the years ahead, to the largest size relative to the economy since World War II.”
By Garry Boulard
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