The US government posted another massive deficit to start out calendar-year 2020.
According to the latest data released by the US Treasury Department, Uncle Sam spent $32.6 billion more than it took in last month. That compares with an $8.7 billion surplus in January 2019. Analysts had projected an $11.5 billion shortfall in January.
The CBO projects the federal government will run massive budget deficits into the foreseeable future and says the ballooning national debt poses “significant risk” to the economy and financial system.
According to the CBO, the federal budget shortfall will hit $1.02 trillion in FY 2020 and rise into the foreseeable future. Deficits will average $1.3 trillion per year between 2021 and 2030 and top $1.5 trillion by the end of the decade. The CBO projects cumulative deficits over the next decade to total $13.1 trillion.
The US federal government ran a budget deficit of over $1 trillion in the 2019 calendar year. It was the first budget deficit over $1 trillion in any calendar year since 2012 — in the midst of the Great Recession.
The budget shortfall from January through December totaled $1.02 trillion, according to the latest report issued by the Treasury Department. That continued a rapidly accelerating upward trajectory. The 2019 budget gap was 17.1% bigger than the 2018 deficit, which was a 28.2% increase over 2017.
Fiscal 2019 ended Sept. 30 with the biggest budget deficit in seven years, with the shortfall coming in just a hair under $1 trillion.
And we’re already on track to top that. Just two months into fiscal 2020, the budget deficit is already 12% bigger than it was this time last year and is hurtling toward that $1 trillion mark.
Jerome Powell lectured Congress about the national debt last week, calling it unsustainable. The Federal Reserve chairman is concerned. He admitted that with interest rates already close to zero, the central bank has very little room to cut rates in the event of an economic downturn. Peter Schiff appeared on the Claman Countdown, along with Milken Institute economist Bill Lee to talk about Powell’s comments.
Peter said that while Powell is lecturing Congress, it’s really the Fed’s fault.
When is a $984 billion budget deficit good news?
When you thought you might get a $1 trillion budget deficit.
The Treasury Department released the fiscal year 2019 budget numbers on Friday. The budget shortfall came in at $984 billion right on the CBO estimate. A CNBC report said this would likely, “come as a relief to the Trump administration, which had previously forecast that the deficit would hit $1 trillion during the 2019 fiscal year.”
The US government is spending money and running up debt at an unfathomable rate. The US national debt increased by a staggaring $814 billion in just two months. When confronted with this reality, most people just shrug. Policymakers certainly don’t care. They continue to ramp up spending and call for even more. Paul Krugman recently tweeted that we need more government stimulus — ie spending — to stoke tepid demand.
Democrats have never cared about spending and Republicans swear tax cuts will grow the economy and fix the debt problem. But as we’ve reported many times, debt retards economic growth.
Now we have even more evidence that government stimulus doesn’t stimulate. In fact, it has the exact opposite effect, as we can see from Europe’s spending binge.
The US national debt increased by a staggering $814 billion between Aug. 1 and Oct. 6, according to Treasury Department data.
That represents a 4% increase in the debt — in just a little over two months.
I saw a tweet this week by Paul Krugman asserting, “What we do have is a persistent problem of weak demand; yes, we have full employment now, but only with extremely low interest rates, which means little ability to respond to the next downturn. This makes a strong case for a big government investment program.”
Ah yes. It’s the Keynesian solution to every problem. Just spend more money!
The national debt continues to spiral upward. It increased by another $1.2 trillion in fiscal year 2019. But Paul Krugman says it’s not that big of a deal. He downplayed the national debt in a tweet, claiming emphatically that “DEBT IS MONEY WE OWE TO OURSELVES.”
This encapsulates a common Keynesian argument. Debt can’t really burden future generations. In the aggregate, Americans won’t be any worse off. Paying the national debt merely shifts dollars from one American to another. While future taxpayers will be out some money, the American bondholders who receive the interest payments will end up with more money. When all is said and done, it’s a wash.