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By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

5/8/2014 (11 months ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Extra funds attributed to lower overall spending, higher tax receipts

The United States Treasury took in $114 billion more than it had to pay out in April, according to the Congressional Budget Office. The influx of cash is being credited to lower overall spending and higher tax receipts.

This is what people usually think of when they think of 'Uncle Sam surplus.' Not in this case.

This is what people usually think of when they think of "Uncle Sam surplus." Not in this case.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

5/8/2014 (11 months ago)

Published in Politics & Policy

Keywords: Budget, surplus, treasury


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The month of April usually brings an influx of receipts as Americans file their tax returns. Since October 1, or the first seven months of this fiscal year, the office estimates the country has racked up a $301 billion deficit, which is $187 billion lower than it was for the same period last year.

Federal coffers saw a seven percent increase in individual income taxes and payroll taxes, a 15 percent increase in corporate income taxes, and a 37 percent increase in money paid to Treasury by the Federal Reserve.

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Overall spending fell by 2 percent. Areas that witnessed the biggest drops included unemployment benefits and homeland security, which were both down 31 percent, agriculture, which was down 12 percent and defense spending, which was down by five percent.

Much of the drop in overall spending is attributable to bigger payments from Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to Treasury. According to the weird accounting rules of the federal budget, those payments are counted as "negative" spending.

Offsetting the spending decline were increases in Social Security, which was up five percent and Medicaid, which was up by nine percent.

The trend in higher tax receipts and lower overall spending has been in effect for some time now, because of the economic recovery and spending restraint enacted by Congress.

Last month, the CBO projected that the 2014 shortfall would decline to 2.8 percent of gross domestic product or $492 billion. That is well below the 4.1 percent, or $680 billion, recorded for fiscal year 2013. To top of page

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