Wednesday, May 27, 2009

A $50 billion deficit? Ouch!

Finance Minister Jim Flaherty has raised his estimate of our deficit from the $33.7 billion shortfall he forecast in January’s budget to a whopping $50 billion. The deficit will be the country’s first after more than a decade of budget surpluses.

We are also seeing the substantial auto payments that are going to be required. As a result of all of that, we will run a substantial short-term deficit this year, which I would estimate at more than $50 billion.

- Jim Flaherty
Federal Finance Minister

Last November, the Conservative government projected budget surpluses, but January’s $40 billion stimulus package has changed all that. Now the finance minister is projecting lower federal revenues and higher EI payouts than previously expected.

Prime Minister Stephen Harper said yesterday that the deficits would not be long-term. “Our deficits are affordable but they will remain short-term,” the PM told Parliament, adding that they were modest when compared with deficits being racked up by other nations.

This may be so, but it’s small consolation to fiscal conservatives who fear that runaway spending is actually the root cause of the forecasted deficits, and that a balanced budget will be far more illusive than Mr. Harper and Mr. Flaherty are prepared to admit.

© 2009 Russell G. Campbell


  1. Putting our country in the hands of the opposition parties will make matters worse.
    Work for 3 months then recieve E.I for 52wks is what the opposition parties want.
    Maybe we should do so. sell donouts and sit while recieving E.I. Can you imagine what it will amount to per year.

  2. take away 40 Billion in a stimulious package and you have a 10 billion dollar over run... How much did Canadians lose in the UI program when Liberals renamed it to EI and restructured it to pay into general revinues esentially stealnig from all working Canadians and claiming it a balanced budget plan... Just curious...

  3. In the FU Flaherty said there would be no deficit.

    Harper/Flaherty are not up to the challenge of fiscal manageent. These past 6 months have been a disaster. And these clowns don't know what is going on.