WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The budget deficit shrank by nearly half in January compared to a year earlier as tax collections from individuals rose and outlays fell, the Congressional Budget Office said on Tuesday.
The CBO said it expects the Treasury Department to report a $27 billion deficit for January, versus a $50 billion deficit in January 2011.
The January budget gap will bring the total deficit for the first four months of fiscal 2012 to $349 billion, a decrease of about $70 billion from the same period of fiscal 2011.
The CBO last week predicted that the United States would rack up a $1-trillion-plus deficit for a fourth straight year, forecasting a $1.08 trillion gap for fiscal 2012, which ends on September 30. The fiscal 2011 U.S. deficit was $1.3 trillion.