For the first six months of fiscal 2021, the deficit widened 130% to a record $1.7 trillion. Outlays from October through March rose to $3.4 trillion, an increase of 45%. Receipts rose 6% to $1.7 trillion. The government’s spending surge has provided some cushion to the economy from the pandemic’s devastation, but it has also sent deficits soaring to levels not seen since the end of World War II as a proportion of the economy. Weaker tax revenue has contributed to the shortfall.
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