November Budget Deficit $150.4 Billion, Worse Than $138 Billion Consensus, Biggest November Deficit On Record
The Treasury has released the November deficit, which at $150.4 billion was about $12 billion worse than expected. Total receipts were $148 billion, of which individual income taxes were $64.3 billion, while the government actually refunded $3.1 billion for corporate taxes in the month. While cumulative receipts since the start of the new fiscal year are better than in the prior year period ($135.7 billion compared to $109.1 billion), it is the expense side that is far more important: in November the government spent $299.4 billion, the bulk of which going to the Department of Health and Human Services ($72 billion), social security ($64 billion), and Defense ($57 billion). The department of education saw a whopping $7.6 billion in funding in November. What is more troubling is that the interest expense is starting to rise: in the two months ended November 30, the US government paid $43.5 billion compared to $40.8 billion last year. Of course, this is to be expected, as total US debt is about $1 trillion higher now than it was last year. And, as always, what is most notable is that in November total debt increased by $192 billion to $13.861 trillion from $13.669 trillion. In other words, we are now at a point that every dollar in receipts is matched by 1.3 dollars in incremental debt.