Budget Deficit in U.S. Narrows as Job Gains Bolster Revenue

By Kasia Klimasinska

December 11 (Bloomberg) — The budget deficit in the U.S. last month narrowed more than economists forecast as rising employment and a rallying stock market boosted revenue to a November record.

Spending exceeded revenue by $135.2 billion, compared with $172.1 billion in November 2012, the Treasury Department said today in Washington. The median estimate in a Bloomberg survey of 17 economists was for a $140 billion gap. Receipts rose 12.8 percent to the highest ever for the month, while spending fell 4.8 percent.

Declining unemployment has helped reduce the countrys deficit as a share of gross domestic product by more than half in the past four years to $680.3 billion in fiscal year ended Sept. 30 from a record $1.42 trillion in 2009. The Congressional Budget Office has projected the shortfall will shrink further this year and next as stronger economic growth lifts individual and corporate taxes.

Weve seen spending come down and tax receipts outperforming, based off of a little bit better economic growth, said Michael Brown, an economist at Wells Fargo Securities LLC in Charlotte, North Carolina. As long as we maintain a pace of job growth that is consistent with what weve seen over the last couple of months, that trend of increase in revenue should continue.