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A deficiency, misappropriation, or defalcation; a minus balance; something wanting.

Deficit is commonly used to mean any kind of shortage, as in an account, a number, or a balance due. Deficit spending or financing involves taking in less money than the amount that is paid out.


Federal Budget.

West's Encyclopedia of American Law, edition 2. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.


n. a shortage, less than is due, or in the case of a business or government budget, more expenditures than income. Unbalanced budgets with a planned year-end deficit are prohibited at every level of government except the federal.

Copyright © 1981-2005 by Gerald N. Hill and Kathleen T. Hill. All Right reserved.

DEFICIT. This Latin term signifies that something is wanting. It is used to express the deficiency which is discovered in the accounts of an accountant, or in the money in which he has received.

A Law Dictionary, Adapted to the Constitution and Laws of the United States. By John Bouvier. Published 1856.
References in periodicals archive ?
We think the general government deficit will remain 2.5%-3% in the medium term.
The former minister criticized March 8 ministers for allegedly helping to make the 2010 government deficit "the largest in 20 years."
THE Birmingham Mail makes a number of l useful points in its editorial on September 8, but little is said about the causes of the massive government deficit.
IRELAND had the biggest government deficit in the EU last year - even worse than Greece, figures revealed yesterday.
"We have gone to the other pole of saying there's a massive government deficit, we have got to be upfront with the public about how we deal with it."
* SIR - By focusing on this year's record government deficit standing at 12.6% of GDP, the Tories tend to ignore the relatively low level of total debt which stands at 60% of GDP.
THE EUROPEAN Commission has effectively accused Greece of fraud over its misreporting of government deficit figures.
For example, it is interesting to determine whether government deficit spending to increase aggregate demand would raise output.
Official estimates indicate a general government deficit of 4.3% of GDP for 2005, down from 6.5% in 2004.
The next day in Florida--the state that gave Bush his contested victory over Democrat Al Gore in 2000--Senator Kerry blamed the President for the rising government deficit (debt), cutting funds for fire-fighters and police officers, and not helping the millions of Americans who have no health insurance.
If it is, then the United States would find its interest to lie in a permanent policy of "benign neglect" for its federal budget deficit and the balance-of-payment deficit that helps finance the government deficit via foreign central bank recycling.
Philip Shaw, economist at Investec, said:I think it alleviates some of the concerns of the size of the Government deficit this year,'' he said.

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