The United States budget deficit grew to a record $864 billion in June as the federal government continued pumping money into the economy to prop up workers and businesses affected by the coronavirus pandemic, the Treasury Department said on Monday.
The deficit was driven largely by government spending related to the Paycheck Protection Program, which by the end of June had approved more than $500 billion loans to support small businesses. Over all, government outlays topped $1.1 trillion dollars last month, while receipts were down sharply as a result of tax payments that have been deferred until mid-July.
The monthly deficit was the largest since April, when it hit a record gap of $738 billion. For the fiscal year to date, the government is generating red ink at a record clip. So far in fiscal 2020, the deficit is $1.99 trillion, a 267 percent increase from 2019.
The figures underscore the deep fiscal hole facing the United States as it copes with a pandemic that has thrown millions of people out of work and shuttered businesses, resulting in a surge of bankruptcies around the country.
The swelling deficit, while expected, could further complicate talks for another rescue package given Republicans’ concerns about the financial tab. Lawmakers are preparing to resume negotiations over another round of fiscal support as the virus remains resurgent…