by Jim Quinn
So the deficit is up $700 billion in the first six months, but the CBO is predicting a $900 billion deficit for the full year. With the economy slowing dramatically and corporate profits declining, revenues will decline in the 2nd half of the year. Does anyone think spending will slow down? We are headed for at least a $1.2 trillion deficit. Thank God we have a fiscally responsible Republican president.
The federal budget deficit rose by $94 billion to $693 billion for the first half of fiscal 2019, the Congressional Budget Office estimated Friday in its monthly budget review.
Revenues were up, by 1% to $1.5 trillion, but spending rose even more, by about 5% to $2.2 trillion.
The federal government is headed toward a deficit of about $900 billion this year, according to the CBO, which is Congress’ nonpartisan agency for budget and economic projections. Deficits are only supposed to grow in the years ahead because of a long-term mismatch between spending and revenues, sending the federal debt to the highest levels since World War II.
Corporate revenues fell about 15% in the first half of the year, the CBO said, because of the tax overhaul signed by President Trump in 2017 that lowered the corporate tax rate. Individual taxes, too, were down because of the tax cuts for individuals.
But those tax cuts were offset by growth in payroll taxes and added revenues from the tariffs Trump has imposed on trading partners.
Spending, meanwhile, grew for mandatory spending programs such as Social Security and Medicare. Defense spending also rose, as did interest payments on the debt.