© Reuters. Illustration photo of a U.S. five dollar note
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. budget deficit hit a record $3.132 trillion during fiscal 2020, more than triple the 2019 shortfall, as a result of massive coronavirus rescue spending, the U.S. Treasury said on Friday.
The deficit more than doubled the previous record of $1.416 trillion in fiscal 2009, when the United States was battling a financial crisis.
At the start of the 2020 fiscal year ended Sept. 30, the U.S. government had been forecast to rack up a $1 trillion deficit before coronavirus lockdowns began in March.
In September, the year’s final month, the U.S. budget deficit was $125 billion, compared with an $83 billion surplus in September 2019, the Treasury said.
September receipts totaled $373 billion, just $1 billion below a year earlier as higher Federal Reserve earnings and excise tax collections made up for lower personal and corporate income tax receipts. September outlays rose by $206 billion from a year earlier to $498 billion.
Receipts for the full fiscal year totaled $3.42 billion, a decrease of $43 billion or 1% from fiscal 2019. Fiscal 2020 outlays jumped $2.105 trillion from 2019 to a total of $6.55 trillion, with the increase made up almost entirely from increased healthcare and unemployment compensation costs, and the cost of small business and corporate rescue programs approved by Congress.