Federal deficit through first eight months of fiscal year totals $9.1B
Despite higher spending, the deficit fell compared to last year as new revenue added more to books
OTTAWA—The federal government’s deficit for the first eight months of the current fiscal year was smaller than a year earlier as revenue growth outpaced increases in spending.
According to the latest fiscal monitor, Ottawa rang up a deficit of $9.1 billion for the period from April to November, compared with a shortfall of $12.7 billion in the same months of the previous fiscal year.
The monthly report says revenues were up $8.8 billion, or 4.8 per cent, as an increase in tax revenues was partially offset by a decrease in employment insurance premium revenues.
Program spending increased up $5.8 billion, or 3.2 per cent, reflecting increases in major transfers to persons and other levels of government and direct program expenses.
Public debt charges were down $500 million, or 3.0 per cent, largely due to a lower average effective interest rate.
The government’s fall economic update projected a spending shortfall of $18.4 billion for the financial year ending March 31, down from the $25.5 billion federal deficit projection in the March budget.