The Covid-19 has tripled the US budget deficit to exceed $ 3 trillion

A store closed due to the Covid-19 epidemic in New York on October 15.

The United States budget deficit tripled for the fiscal year ended September 30, 2020, reaching $ 3.132 billion, the US Treasury Department announced on Friday (October 16). This figure represents about 16.1% of gross domestic product, a record since World War II. It is explained by the stimulus measures to fight against the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Revenue reached $ 3,420 billion, almost stable from 2019 but 8% behind budget. Above all, they represent just over half of federal spending. These have exploded, reaching $ 6.552 billion, an increase of 47% over the previous year.

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This surge in spending is explained in particular by exceptional unemployment benefits (440 billion more than the estimated budget), support for businesses and tax assistance for households (1,050 billion more than expected) and health expenditure. (182 billion additional). Agricultural spending was $ 29.6 billion over budget.

A recession much less severe than that of the euro zone

These measures were so powerful that they helped increase the purchasing power of American households from March until August as the country recreated 11 million of the 22 million jobs it had destroyed. in March in April. The unemployment rate in September was 7.9%. According to the IMF’s October forecast, the United States will experience a recession of 4.3% of GDP in 2020, much less severe than that of the euro zone (minus 8.3%), followed by a rebound of 3 , 1% in 2021 (5.2 for the euro zone).

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In one year, the federal debt has grown by a quarter, from $ 16.8 trillion to $ 21 trillion. For the first time since World War II, it exceeded 100% of the national wealth. According to IMF figures published in October, US public debt will have fallen from 109 to 131% of GDP in the United States and from 84 to 101% in the euro zone between 2019 and 2020. In the United States, no one is really worried about over-indebtedness: with the fall in interest rates, brought to zero by the central bank, interest on loans has fallen compared to the previous year.

This financial drift comes as Republicans and Democrats fail to agree on a new stimulus package of around 1.9 trillion dollars. This provides for new federal unemployment benefits, which expired at the end of July, a bailout of airlines and aid to federated states and local communities sometimes on the verge of bankruptcy. He is called for by President Donald Trump and the President of the American Federal Reserve Jerome Powell, but certain elected Republicans are rediscovering, with the approach of elections very difficult for them, the virtues of a budgetary orthodoxy buried since the arrival of Donald Trump at the White House. And they don’t want to come to the aid of cities and states run by Democrats, hit by the Covid-19 crisis.

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