US budget deficit

WASHINGTON: The federal government ran up a much smaller budget deficit in August than a year ago, remaining on track to record the smallest annual deficit in eight years.

The Treasury Department said on Friday that the deficit in August totalled $64.4 billion, a drop of 50 per cent from the same month a year ago.

Much of that improvement reflected quirks in timing related to the calendar. Some $42 billion in August benefit payments were made in July because August 1 fell on a Saturday.

Through the first 11 months of this budget year ending September 30, the deficit is running 10 per cent below last year’s level.

The Congressional Budget Office is forecasting that the deficit for the full year will drop to $426 billion, down 11.8 per cent from the previous year as a stronger economy brings in more tax revenue.

A version of this article appears in print on September 13, 2015