According to new data from the Treasury Department, the federal government grossed $194 billion in March, paid out nearly $66 billion in refunds, netting $128 billion in tax revenue. However, the Treasure paid out a total of $1.1187 trillion in federal expenses.
From CNS News.com:
That $1.0528 trillion in spending for March equaled 8.2 times the $128.179 in net federal tax revenue for the month.
The lion’s share of this federal spending went to redeem Treasury securities that had matured during the month—most of which were short-term Treasury bills that have terms of one-year or less.
In fact, during March the Treasury redeemed $705.3 billion in Treasury securities of which $623.9 billion were short-term bills with a term of one year or less.
After the disbursements made to pay off the $705.3 billion in loans that came due in March, three of the other top four federal spending items for the month were entitlements programs. The other top item was payments to defense contractors.
The Treasury paid $49.8 billion in Social Security benefits in March, $47.4 billion in Medicare benefits, and $22.575 billion in Medicaid benefits. It also paid $37.9 billion to defense contractors.
To help pay off its $1.0528 trillion in monthly bills on only $128.179 in monthly tax revenue, the Treasury turned primarily to new borrowing. During the month, according to the Treasury statement, the government sold $786.5 billion in new securities. It also drew down its cash balance from $190.6 billion at the beginning of the month to $118.1 billion at the end of the month. It also reaped $18 billion from the sale of assets in the Troubled Asset Relief Program.