Lyndon B. Johnson photo

Statement by the President Forecasting a Budget Surplus in Fiscal Year 1969.

December 19, 1968

I AM PLEASED to report that on the basis of present estimates, the Federal budget will show a small surplus in fiscal year 1969.

This is a substantial further improvement over the $5 billion deficit previously estimated in the summer budget review.

The achievement of a surplus is based on two major developments: The stringent expenditure limitations instituted this summer are being rigidly enforced, so that I am confident that the level of expenditures for the fiscal year are being and can be held to the figure of $184.4 billion projected in the summer budget review. Revenues are running substantially above earlier projections.

In the current economic setting, the move toward a surplus is both appropriate and desirable. It is needed to curb excessive pressures of demand. It will make a major contribution to the long term health of the Nation's financial markets.

I hope it will be possible to submit a budget in January which will continue this small surplus.

In the five budgets covering the period that I have been President, the Government will have:

--Invested $774 billion for programs to improve the lives of our citizens and to protect the Nation's security. Sixty percent of the budget increases during the period were in domestic areas.

--Received $737 billion in revenues to fund these activities. The total deficit over this period is estimated at $37 billion. That deficit, however, is more than offset by the $40 billion in lower taxes returned to American families and corporations during this period under the lower tax rates which we secured shortly after I became President. This includes the tax surcharge enacted this year.

If we consider excise and income taxes (and exclude $25 billion in increased social security taxes paid into trust funds), the following result obtains: $65 billion in lower taxes returned during this period under the lower rates we secured in early 1964. This $65 billion in lower taxes is 75 percent more than the total combined deficit of $37 billion.

Note: The statement was released at Bethesda Naval Medical Center, where the President was being treated for a respiratory illness.
See also Items 677, 678.

Lyndon B. Johnson, Statement by the President Forecasting a Budget Surplus in Fiscal Year 1969. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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