WASHINGTON — The federal government’s budget deficit was $231.7 billion in February, up $9.2 billion or 4% from the $222.5 billion deficit a year ago, the Treasury Department reported Monday.

The deficit is larger than the median $229.0 billion estimated by economists polled by Thomson Reuters.

Outlays totaled $335.1 billion, $2 billion or 0.6% more than the $333.2 billion in February 2011.

Receipts were $103.4 billion, $7 billion or 6.6% lower than the $110.7 billion a year ago.

In January, the deficit was reported as $27.4 billion.

For the year-to-date the government’s deficit is $580.8 billion.

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