$318,576,000,000: Federal Tax Collections Set Record in October

The federal government collected a record $318,576,000,000 in total taxes in October, the first month of fiscal 2023, according to the Monthly Treasury Statement released today.

The Treasury set the previous record for October tax collections last year, when it brought in $305,918,360,000 in total taxes in constant October 2022 dollars.

This year’s record October tax receipts of $318,576,000,000 were up $12,657,640,000—or 4.1 percent—from last year’s record of $305,918,360,000.

At the same time the federal government was collecting this $318,576,000,000 in record taxes for the month of October, the federal government was spending $406,374,000,000—thus, running up a deficit of $87,798,000,000 for the month.

The $406,374,000,000 that the federal government spent in October was not a record. It actually spent more (in inflation-adjusted constant October 2022 dollars) in each of the last four Octobers, including October 2021 ($483,758,650,000), October 2020 ($597,160,480,000), October 2019 ($440,033,980,000), and October 2018 ($416,208,050,000). It also spent more (in constant October 2022 dollars) in October 2008 ($553,212,800,000) and October 2009 ($429,686,110,000).

This October’s record $318,576,000,000 in total tax collections included $175,349,000,000 in individual income taxes; $108,019,000,000 in social insurance and retirement taxes; $14,630,000,000 in corporation income taxes; $8,163,000,000 in customs duties; $5,812,000,000 in excise taxes; $2,806,000,000 in estate and gift taxes; and $3,797,000,000 in what the Treasury calls “miscellaneous receipts.”

The largest category of federal spending in October was the Social Security Administration, which spent $104,621,000,000 during the month. The Department of Health and Human Services was second with $87,490,000,000 in spending. The Department of Defense-Military Programs was third with $73,110,000,000 in spending.

The fourth largest category of federal spending in October was interest on Treasury debt securities. It hit $47,574,000,000.

(Historical dollar amounts in this article were adjusted into constant October 2022 dollars using the Bureau of Labor Statistics inflation calculator.)

Reporting from MRC.