US budget deficit widens to $747B in 9 months of fiscal year

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The U.S. federal budget deficit reached 747 billion U.S. dollars in the first nine months of the fiscal year 2019, up by 23 percent from the previous year, the Treasury Department said on Thursday.

The top three outlays for the nine months, from October to June, were 780 billion dollars on social security, 512 billion dollars on national defense, and 485 billion dollars on medicare, according to data from the Monthly Treasury Statement.

Federal expenditures increased to 3.36 trillion dollars in the period, up by 6.6 percent from a year ago, while revenue grew to 2.61 trillion dollars, up by 2.7 percent.

The federal budget deficit in June totaled 8.5 billion dollars, with total outlays reaching 342 billion dollars, down by 12.5 percent from the year before, and total revenues 334 billion dollars, up by 5.6 percent.

Based on the budget proposal for fiscal year 2020 that President Donald Trump sent to Congress in March, the deficit is expected to reach about 1 trillion U.S. dollars for fiscal year 2020, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) estimated in May.

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) said in June that the U.S. public debt is on "an unsustainable path," and policy adjustments are needed to lower the fiscal deficit and to put public debt on a gradual downward path over the medium term.

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