Evan Soltas
Mar 12, 2013

We Can Run Deficits Forever

In Bloomberg, I explain why a balanced budget is not necessary to accomplish any reasonable fiscal goal:

The U.S. federal government doesn't actually need to balance its budget. Ever. Really. We could run a budget deficit every year for the next century. We'd be just fine.

How do we know? Well, for one thing, we've basically always done that. Between 1929 and 2013, the average federal budget deficit as a percentage of gross domestic product has been 3.1 percent. Over those 84 years, we've run 70 budget deficits and 14 budget surpluses.