U.S. Constitution, Article 1, Section 9
The federal government collects revenue from a variety of sources, including individual income taxes, payroll taxes, corporate income taxes, and excise taxes. It also collects revenue from services like admission to national parks and customs duties.
The federal government funds a variety of programs and services that support the American public. The government also spends money on interest it has incurred on outstanding federal debt, including Treasury notes and bonds.
A budget deficit occurs when the money spent exceeds the money collected for a given period.
The national debt is the money the federal government has borrowed to cover the outstanding balance of expenses incurred over time. To pay for a deficit, the federal government borrows additional funds, which increases the debt. Other activities contribute to the change in federal debt, such as changes in the Treasury’s operating cash account and federal student loans. The total debt for the US through month DD, year is $.
Are federal debt and deficit the same thing? No, but they do affect one another
We might hope to see the finances of the Union as clear and intelligible as a merchant’s books, so that every member of Congress, and every person of any mind in the Union should be able to comprehend them, to investigate abuses, and consequently to control them.
Thomas Jefferson to Albert Gallatin, 1802 (edited)
Americans asked. We listened.
Your Guide to America's Finances is a re-invention of the Citizen's Guide to the Financial Report of the U.S. Government. This site was created in response to the public's desire to learn more about the financial picture of the United States. Where does the money come from? Where does it go? What are the trends over time? This guide was created to make federal financial information open and accessible to all – reflecting the very principles that our founding fathers set forth when the United States was formed.
Your Guide to America's Finances is brought to you by the U.S. Department of the Treasury