Fiscal Monitor shows deficit of $5.6B through first 11 months of ’17–’18

OTTAWA _ The federal government ran a deficit of $5.6 billion through the first 11 months of its 2017-18 fiscal year.

The Finance Department’s shortfall for the April 2017 to February 2018 period compares with a deficit of $11.5 billion for the same period the previous year.

The government’s spring budget predicted a shortfall of $19.4 billion for its 2017-18 fiscal year.

The monthly fiscal monitor report says revenues were up $14.1 billion, or 5.3 per cent, compared with a year ago, boosted by increases in tax revenues and other revenues.

Program spending was up $8.3 billion, or 3.3 per cent, due to increases in major transfers to persons and other levels of government and direct program expenses.

Public debt charges were down $200 million or 0.7 per cent due mainly to a lower average effective interest rate.