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U.S. budget deficit hits $3.1 trillion

After massive spending to shore up the economy hammered by the pandemic and to save U.S. businesses from going belly up, the U.S. federal budget deficit hit a record $3.132 trillion during fiscal 2020.

That’s according to the U.S. Treasury on Friday - which said the deficit more than doubled the previous record of $1.416 trillion in 2009, during the financial crisis.

At the start of the 2020 fiscal year, the U.S. government had been forecast to rack up a $1 trillion deficit. But that was before coronavirus lockdowns began in March - sending the economy into a tailspin.

The final fiscal 2020 deficit numbers come as the Trump administration and Congress have been unable to agree on a new round of coronavirus stimulus, with many Senate Republicans calling for fiscal restraint in another package.

Meanwhile - millions of Americans remain out of work and the $600 extra boost to weekly unemployment payments has dried up.