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'Federal debt ... is on an unsustainable course.'
America is set to add $800 billion more than previously expected to the national debt over the next 10 years, according to new numbers released Wednesday by the Congressional Budget Office.
Specifically, the agency's new calculations put the projected deficit for 2019-2029 to be $809 billion greater than projections made in May; while the estimate for this year's deficit is now $63 billion higher at $960 billion.
The report also estimates that the U.S. will run a total 10-year deficit of $12.2 trillion instead of the $11.4 trillion projected back in may.
The increase, the CBO said, has been brought about by the combination of the recent, deficit-expanding budget deal that Congress passed earlier this month and the emergency border funding package passed in June.
"Deficits are now expected to be larger than previously projected, primarily because recently enacted legislation raised caps on discretionary appropriations for fiscal years 2020 and 2021," CBO Director Phillip Swagel said in a statement, which also said that the effects of the budget deal were short-term economic growth and the effects of lowered interest rates.
The report also anticipates that the federal deficit will first break $1 trillion in 2020, two years earlier than it initially expected, and that the average deficit for the rest of the decade will sit around $1.2 trillion.
"The nation's fiscal outlook is challenging," Swagel's statement continued. "Federal debt, which is already high by historical standards, is on an unsustainable course, projected to rise even higher after 2029 because of the aging of the population, growth in per capita spending on health care, and rising interest costs. To put it on a sustainable course, lawmakers will have to make significant changes to tax and spending policies."
The CBO also points to recent tariffs as a factor slowing potential GDP growth and economic investment; however, the director's statement cautions that actual budgetary and economic outcomes could turn out differently than projected "on range of developments, such as unexpected changes in international conditions, business confidence, or productivity growth."
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