WASHINGTON — The federal government’s ran a $59.1 billion budget surplus in April, a turnaround from a $198.2 billion deficit in March and up from the $40.4 billion deficit a year ago, the Treasury Department reported Thursday.

The April surplus, the first since a $46.0 billion surplus in September 2008, surpassed the median $30.0 billion surplus estimated by economists polled by Thomson Reuters.

The march deficit was first reported as $198.2 billion.

Outlays totaled $259.7 billion, $70.0 billion or 21% less than the $330.0 billion in April 2011.

Receipts were $318.8 billion, $29 billion, 10.1% higher than the $289.5 billion a year ago.

For the year-to-date the government’s deficit is $719.9 billion. That’s down $150 billion, or 17.3%, from the $870.0 billion deficit through the same point in fiscal 2011.

 

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