Fiscal monitor shows Ottawa ran $11.8B deficit for 2018-19 fiscal year

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OTTAWA — A preliminary estimate by the Finance Department says the federal government posted a deficit of $11.8 billion for its 2018-19 fiscal year.

The shortfall compared with a deficit of $16.7 billion for 2017-18.

The Liberal’s spring budget had forecast a deficit of $14.9 billion for the 2018-19 fiscal year which ended on March 31.

The shortfall came as the monthly fiscal monitor report said revenue rose $24.7 billion, or 8.1 per cent, due to increases in tax revenues and other revenues.

Program expenses gained $18.5 billion, or 6.2 per cent, as major transfers to persons, major transfers to other levels of government and direct program expenses moved higher.

Public debt charges increased $1.4 billion, or 6.3 per cent, due to a higher average effective interest rate on the stock of interest-bearing debt.

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