Budget deficit totals record $735.7 billion through January

WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. government’s budget deficit hit $735.7 billion through the first four months of the budget year — an all-time high for the period. The shortfall accumulated as a pandemic-triggered recession cut into tax revenues while spending on COVID relief measures sent outlays soaring. The Treasury Department reported Wednesday that the deficit for the budget year that began Oct. 1 is 89% higher than the $389.2 billion deficit run up in the same period a year ago. Last year’s deficit through January had not yet been impacted by the pandemic which hit in February.