WASHINGTON — The federal government ran a $12.08-billion budget deficit last month, down 18% from the red ink rolled up a year ago, the Treasury Department reported Tuesday.
The department said the December deficit compared to an imbalance between revenues and spending of $14.66 billion in December, 1985.
For the first three months of this fiscal year, the deficit totals $64.34 billion. While this is a 14% improvement over the same three months in 1986, it is still behind the pace of improvement the Reagan Administration is predicting for the entire year.
For the 1987 fiscal year, which ends on Sept. 30, the Administration is forecasting a budget deficit of $173.18 billion, down 22% from the all-time high of $220.7 billion in red ink last year.
In its budget request for 1988, the Administration is forecasting a further shrinkage in the budget deficit to $107.76 billion. Critics have questioned the figures for this year and next, contending they are based on favorable economic forecasts that are not likely to come true and on budget cuts Congress has rejected in the past.