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posted on 09 December 2016

November 2016 CBO Monthly Budget Review: Total Receipts Up by 1 Percent in the First Two Months of Fiscal Year 2017

from the Congressional Budget Office

The federal budget deficit was $179 billion for the first two months of fiscal year 2017, CBO estimates, $22 billion less than the one recorded during the same period last year.

Revenues were higher than those in the same period last year, by 1 percent, and outlays decreased by 3 percent. But this year's outlays were reduced by the shift of certain payments from October 2016 to September 2016 because October 1 fell on a weekend. Otherwise, outlays so far this year would have been $25 billion (or about 4 percent) larger than those in October and November last year, and the deficit would have risen by about $20 billion.

Total Receipts: Up by 1 Percent in the First Two Months of Fiscal Year 2017 Receipts through November totaled $421 billion, CBO estimates—$5 billion more than the amount for the same period last year. The largest year-over-year changes were the following:

  • Individual income and payroll (social insurance) taxes together rose by $13 billion (or 4 percent).
    • Amounts withheld from workers' paychecks rose by $16 billion (or 5 percent). That change reflects increases in wages and salaries.

    • Nonwithheld payments of income taxes rose slightly—by less than $1 billion (or just under 1 percent).

    • Income tax refunds were up by $2 billion (or 12 percent), reducing net receipts.

    • Receipts from unemployment insurance taxes (one kind of payroll tax) declined by $1 billion (or 12 percent).

  • Corporate income taxes fell by about $5 billion (from $8 billion in the first two months of fiscal year 2016 to about $2 billion so far this year). Because corporate income tax receipts in October and November generally represent a small percentage of the year's total, the results for those two months are not a significant indicator of receipts for the whole fiscal year. The first quarterly estimated payment of those taxes in the current fiscal year, for most corporations, is not due until December 15.

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