What a difference a year makes.
In June 2019, the federal deficit totaled $8 billion. According to the Treasury Department Monday, the monthly deficit in June 2020 came in at $864 billion – the highest monthly shortfall on record.
A surge in spending for coronavirus relief drove much of the increase, with outlays rising by 223% to $1.1 trillion. At $511 billion, the Paycheck Protection Program, which provides small businesses with forgivable loans, accounted for nearly half of the spending increase.
Federal receipts were down 28% to $241 billion on a year-over-year basis, driven by job losses and the delay in tax filing deadlines.
The June numbers bring the year-to-date deficit to $2.7 trillion, nearly twice the previous full-year record of $1.4 trillion in 2009. Analysts expect the deficit to total roughly $3.8 trillion for the 2020 fiscal year, which ends on September 30.
“June’s deficit figures highlights just how much havoc the coronavirus pandemic has wreaked on U.S. budgeting,” said Jeff Stein of The Washington Post. “In prior years, the federal deficit was considered large when it approached or eclipsed $1 trillion for an entire year.”