Chart of the Day
Posted at 11 a.m. on Dec. 28, 2012
– Evan Soltas separates out structural government spending and tax revenue as a percent of GDP, which excludes cyclical factors affected by the economic downturn.
“My calculations suggest that federal taxes would bring in revenue of 18.2 percent of GDP, and federal spending would amount to 20.3 percent of GDP, given an average economy. That compares to current tax revenue of 15.9 percent of GDP and spending at 24.5 percent of GDP.”
“None of this is to say that the long-run budget picture is sustainable. In fact, it plainly is not, as the federal government faces a severe challenge of financing the large and growing cost of its health programs. But the U.S.’s budget problem is not as dire as the budget numbers would imply at first glance.”
Bonus: Wonkblog compiles charts from a number of “professional wonks” that they feel best represent the economy in 2012.