CBO has developed “rules of thumb” that show how changes in four key economic variables might affect revenues, outlays, and deficits. An interactive workbook allows users to see the budgetary effects of their own alternative scenarios.
Outlook for the Budget and the Economy
If current laws remain generally unchanged, CBO projects, federal budget deficits and debt would increase over the next 30 years—reaching the highest level of debt relative to GDP in the nation’s history by far.
In CBO’s projections, the economy grows relatively quickly this year and next and then more slowly in the following several years. The federal budget deficit rises substantially, boosting federal debt to nearly 100 percent of GDP by 2028.
Under current law, deficits in CBO’s baseline projections continue to climb over the next decade, driving up federal debt. Economic growth remains modest, at about 2.0 percent through 2018 and then 1.9 percent later in the period.
If current laws remained generally unchanged, the United States would face steadily increasing federal budget deficits and debt over the next 30 years—reaching the highest level of debt relative to GDP ever experienced in this country.
- Blog Post
CBO discusses several uncertainties in the outlook for the U.S. economy, as described in An Update to the Budget and Economic Outlook: 2016 to 2026.