- The Fiscal
- What We're
- What You
Every month the U.S. Treasury releases data on the federal budget, including the current deficit. The following contains budget data for March 2021, which brings us halfway through fiscal year (FY) 2021.
The deficit for March 2021 was $541 billion larger than the deficit recorded in March 2020. Certain payments were shifted out of March 2020 because March 1 fell on a weekend. Without those shifts, the deficit in March 2021 would have been $489 billion larger than the deficit in March 2020.
The cumulative deficit for the first six months of FY21 was $963 billion larger than it was through the first six months of FY20. The increase in the cumulative deficit reflects a $1,063 billion increase in outlays that was only partially offset by a $100 billion increase in revenues.
The sizeable deficit in FY20, and so far in FY21, has pushed up the current amount of debt held by the public by 24 percent relative to a year ago. Eventually, once the situation has stabilized, policymakers should turn their focus to the country’s underlying fiscal situation.