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With no end to federal deficits in sight, budget spells dismay for some economists

No end to federal deficits

The federal Liberals' latest budget announced new spending primarily on the clean economy and health care, but even with that relatively tight focus, the federal government is projected to continue running deficits over the next five years.

Many economists are expressing disappointment in the federal budget and its fiscal projections, noting the government could be in trouble if the economy slows more than it is expected to.

Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland promised that Tuesday's budget would be fiscally restrained in light of a slowing economy that could weigh on government coffers.

But the fiscal projections in the budget show the deficit has been revised upward since the fall, showing no end in sight for deficits, despite the fall budget update in November projecting a balanced budget in 2027-28.

Tuesday's budget forecast a $14 billion deficit in 2027-28, and higher deficits each year than had previously been projected.

Former parliamentary budget officer Kevin Page says it's not surprising that the deficit is higher than what was forecast in the fall, given that the economic outlook has since worsened.



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