Presentation by Christina Hawley Anthony, Chief of the Projections Unit in CBO’s Budget Analysis Division, Robert Arnold, Chief of the Projections Unit in CBO’s Macroeconomic Analysis Division, and Joshua Shakin, Chief of the Revenue Estimating Unit in CBO’s Tax Analysis Division, at a joint seminar with the Congressional Research Service.
This presentation provides an overview of the Congressional Budget Office’s most recent budget and economic projections, which were published on January 28. In those projections, the federal budget deficit is about $900 billion in 2019 and exceeds $1 trillion each year beginning in 2022. Because of persistently large deficits, federal debt held by the public is projected to grow steadily, reaching 93 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) in 2029.
Real GDP is projected to grow by 2.3 percent in 2019—down from 3.1 percent in 2018—as the effects of the 2017 tax act on the growth of business investment wane and federal purchases decline sharply in the fourth quarter of the year. Economic growth is projected to slow to an average of 1.7 percent through 2023 and to average 1.8 percent from 2024 to 2029.