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US budget deficit likely to increase

THE White House yesterday pushed up its forecast for the United States budget deficit for this year by US$89 billion, reflecting the recession, a raft of new unemployment claims and corporate bailouts.

A fresh estimate of the deficit showed it coming in at US$1.84 trillion - representing a massive 12.9 percent of gross domestic product - in the current 2009 fiscal year that ends on September 30. A prior White House forecast released in February projected a deficit of US$1.75 trillion, or 12.3 percent of GDP.


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