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US fiscal-year budget deficit through July surpasses FY'18 shortfall

The U.S. federal government ran a bigger-than-expected monthly budget deficit in July, pushing the fiscal year-to-date total already above the budget shortfall recorded in fiscal full year 2018.

The government posted a budget deficit of $119.70 billion in July, as $371.04 billion in monthly outlays outpaced $251.35 billion in government revenues, the Treasury Department reported Aug. 12.

Economists polled by Econoday had a consensus estimate for a monthly budget deficit of $87.5 billion.

In the first 10 months of the government's fiscal 2019, the budget deficit widened to $866.81 billion from $683.97 billion in the prior-year period, exceeding the entire fiscal 2018 budget gap of $779.00 billion. The government's fiscal year begins in October.

Earlier this year, the U.S. Government Accountability Office said the federal government's fiscal path is unsustainable absent policy changes. DBRS has also warned that rising fiscal deficits could jeopardize the country's sovereign credit ratings.