CBO Blog

  • July 14, 2010

    The federal government supports the use of biofuels—transportation fuel produced usually from renewable plant matter, such as corn—in the pursuit of national energy, environmental, and agricultural policy goals. Tax credits encourage the production and sale of biofuels in the United States, while federal mandates specify minimum amounts and types of biofuel usage each year through 2022.

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  • July 8, 2010

    Yesterday, CBO issued its Monthly Budget Review, which discussed the status of the federal budget through the end of June, encompassing the first nine months of fiscal year 2020.  At that point, the deficit was about $1.0 trillion, about $80 billion dollars less than the shortfall last year at this time.

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  • July 1, 2010

    Social Security is the federal government’s largest single program, and as the U.S. population grows older in the coming decades, its cost is projected to increase more rapidly than its revenues.

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  • June 30, 2010

    Recently, the federal government has been recording the largest budget deficits, as a share of the economy, since the end of World War II. As a result of those deficits, the amount of federal debt held by the public has surged.

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  • June 18, 2010

    Yesterday CBO released estimates of average federal tax rates—households’ federal tax liability divided by their income—in 2007 for households with various amounts of income.  For each income category, the report also presents estimates of average before-tax and after-tax household income; the number of households; and that category’s share of taxes and inc

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  • June 11, 2010

    Earlier this week, CBO’s Acting Assistant Director for National Security, Matthew Goldberg, spoke to the National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform on the topic of discretionary defense spending.

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  • June 7, 2010

    CBO’s greatest asset is its staff, committed not only to its important work supporting the Congress, but also to significant causes outside the office.

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  • June 5, 2010

    The federal budget deficit was $941 billion during the first eight months of fiscal year 2010, CBO estimates in its latest monthly budget review, $51 billion less than the shortfall recorded over the same period last year.

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  • June 3, 2010

    Lenny Skutnik is a household name belonging to an unassuming Congressional Budget Office employee who insists he “wasn’t a hero” when one winter day in 1982 he jumped from the shore into the icy Potomac River to save a drowning woman after an Air Florida flight crashed on takeoff.  “I was just someone who helped another human being,” Lenny said later.

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  • June 3, 2010

    A short time ago, I received an interesting letter from a young man in Michigan asking about federal budget deficits. I thought that perhaps other students would be interested in the kinds of questions he asked and how I answered him, so I’ve decided to share my letter to him with all of you. Here’s what I wrote:

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