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Budget Deficit in U.S. Widens as Spending Increases

The U.S. government posted a wider budget deficit in November as spending swelled compared with the same time last year when a shift in the timing of payments for programs like Medicare and Social Security damped outlays.

The deficit was $150.4 billion last month, exceeding the median estimate of economists surveyed by Bloomberg News, compared with $120.3 billion in November 2009, according to the Treasury Department’s budget statement released in Washington. For the first two months of the 2011 fiscal year, the shortfall narrowed to $290.8 billion from $296.7 billion in the same period last year as revenue improved.