The Deficit Totaled $1.8 Trillion Over the Past Year

The federal budget deficit totaled $1.8 trillion over the past 12 months, up $36 billion from the 12-month period ending in January and up $107 billion from the Fiscal Year (FY) 2023 deficit of $1.7 trillion. The deficit in February 2024 was $298 billion, compared to $262 billion last February. The following is an updated analysis of the rolling deficit, incorporating the latest data from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO)

Removing the effects of student debt cancellation, which was ruled illegal, the deficit was $2.1 trillion over the past year. As a share of the economy, the deficit was roughly 6.5 percent of Gross Domestic Product (GDP), or 7.7 percent excluding student debt effects. Spending was roughly 23.1 percent of GDP and revenue 16.5 percent of GDP.

Compared to the prior 12 months (March 2022 to February of 2023), the deficit over the past year is up 11 percent, with nominal spending down 1.3 percent to $6.4 trillion and revenue down 5.5 percent to $4.6 trillion.

Deficits are projected to total $1.5 trillion in FY 2024 and grow to $2.6 trillion by FY 2034. Substantial policy change will be needed to bring spending and revenue in line.