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CBO forecasts largest-ever monthly surplus as record tax receipts pour in

Record tax receipts will lead to the largest-ever monthly budget surplus for the federal government, congressional analysts said in a new report, as Americans hand over more money to Washington.

The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office estimates the April surplus will total $218 billion, breaking the prior record of nearly $190 billion notched in April 2001.

Greater-than-expected tax receipts drove the surplus, CBO said, noting the record $515 billion in receipts for the month was as much as $40 billion more than the agency estimated about a month ago.

The agency chalked up the difference to greater payments of individual income taxes in April, when tax returns and certain taxpayers’ quarterly estimated payments are due. The reasons for higher payments were twofold, CBO said.

“Those payments were mostly related to economic activity in 2017 and may reflect stronger-than-expected income growth for that year. Part of the strength in receipts also may reflect larger-than-anticipated payments for economic activity in 2018,” the agency said. The prior record for receipts was $472 billion in April 2015.

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