May 30, 2014 / 3:13 PM / 3 years ago

Initial Canada 2013-14 budget gap C$12.11 billion, less than thought

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OTTAWA, May 30, (Reuters) - Canada's preliminary budget deficit for the 2013-14 fiscal year was C$12.11 billion ($11.21 billion), substantially less than the C$16.6 billion forecast in the February budget, the Finance Department said on Friday.

It marked a decline from the C$18.69 billion registered for the fiscal year which ended on March 31, 2013.

The data came from the Fiscal Monitor, which reports government revenues and expenses each month. The final deficit figure could be substantially different due to fiscal year-end adjustments made later.

It nonetheless marked progress towards the budget surplus that the Conservative government has promised for the 2015-16 fiscal year.

For March alone, a month often marked by income tax refunds for early filers, the deficit was C$6.72 billion. The gap a year earlier was C$8.01 billion.

Reporting by Randall Palmer; editing by Louise Egan

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