WASHINGTON May 12 The United States posted a $107 billion budget surplus in April, according to Treasury Department figures released on Monday, suggesting the federal government was on track to slash its annual deficit.
Washington usually runs a surplus in April because households have a deadline for settling tax bills that month.
Last month's surplus was slightly smaller than the $114 billion figure expected by analysts polled by Reuters.
Tax receipts have surged this year as the economy has improved. The Congressional Budget Office expects the deficit will shrink to $492 billion during the fiscal year, which began in October. In 2013, the government ran a $680 billion deficit.
So far this year, the government has run $306 billion into the red. That deficit is 37 percent smaller than it was in the same period of fiscal 2013.
Last month's receipts were $8 billion higher than they were in April of last year. Outlays were also higher, though they have been on a downward trend in part because an improved labor market has led fewer people to draw on jobless benefits.
The expiration of benefits for many long-term unemployed workers in January has also reduced outlays. (Reporting by Jason Lange; Editing by Paul Simao)