U.S. government posts $147 billion deficit in March

FILE PHOTO: A security guard walks in front of an image of the Federal Reserve following the two-day Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) policy meeting in Washington, DC, U.S. on March 16, 2016. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. federal government posted a $147 billion budget deficit in March, according to data released on Wednesday by the Treasury Department.

Analysts polled by Reuters had expected a $180 billion deficit for the month.

The Treasury said federal spending in March was $376 billion, down 10 percent from the same month in 2018, while receipts were $229 billion, up 9 percent compared with March 2018.

The deficit for the fiscal year to date was $691 billion, compared with $600 billion in the comparable period the year earlier.

When adjusted for calendar effects, the deficit remained at $691 billion for the fiscal year to date but was $603 billion for the comparable year-ago period.