U.S. budget deficit to hit 1.8 trillion dollars this year - CBO
The U.S. federal budget deficit is expected to top 1.8 trillion dollars in the current fiscal year, which ends on Sept. 30, 2009, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) estimated on Friday.
The CBO-estimated red ink is even higher than the 1.75 trillion dollars expected by the Obama administration for the current year.
For the next fiscal year, which starts on Oct. 1, 2009, the CBO forecast a budget deficit of around 1.4 trillion dollars, about 200 billion dollars more than what the Obama administration had predicted, Xinhua reported.
The latest figures were briefed by Capitol Hill aides in advance of the official release later Friday.
The deficit figures are driven higher by costs of the 700- billion-dollar financial bailout package and diving tax revenues stemming from the deepening recession.
U.S. federal budget deficit soared to 569 billion dollars in the first four months of the current year, marking the highest on record for this period. The deficit for October 2008 through January 2009 was six times more than the red ink during the year-ago period, and has already surpassed the imbalance for all of last year, which was 454.8 billion dollars, a full-year record.
U.S. President Barack Obama submitted a 3.6-trillion-dollar budget, his first one, to Congress late February. He has described it as "an economic blueprint for our future -- a foundation on which to build a recovery that lasts."
The budget for the 2010 fiscal year seeks to shore up the nation's economy that has been in a recession since December 2007 while also overhauling health care, energy and education.
It projected the deficit for this year will soar to 1.75 trillion dollars, reflecting massive spending to pull the nation out of the recession.
But Obama has pledged to slash the exploding federal deficit in half by 2013, the end of his first term, by scaling back Iraq war spending, raising taxes on the wealthiest Americans and eliminating wasteful public programs.