September 2017 US Cash Deficit $14B

Revenue flat and outlays up a bit, pushing the September Cash deficit from $5B last year to $14B. September will generally run a small surplus due to quarter end tax inflows, but for 2 years in a row now October 1 has been on the weekend, pulling about $40B net of October outflows due October 1 into September… going out 9-29 instead. It’s just a timing issue… Septembers loss is Octobers gain.

Looking at 2017 through 9 months, revenue is up 2.9% and outlays are up 2.4%… and they more or less cancel each other out, leaving the annual deficit at $478B, just $3B lower than last year. With 3 months left, there is no reason to expect a material variance for the year… 2016’s full-year cash deficit was $697B…2017 should be right around there. 2018 will probably look similar as well, with both outlays and revenue growing at 2-3%. So… we have a new baseline a $700B annual cash burn for now all it will take is a war, a recession, tax cuts, or all 3 and this new normal as terrible as it is could get a lot worse fast.

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Author: Travis Esquivel

Travis Esquivel is an engineer, passionate soccer player and full-time dad. He enjoys writing about innovation and technology from time to time.

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