OTTAWA, Oct 31 (Reuters) - Canada's federal budget deficit declined to C$316 million ($280 million) in August from C$2.04 billion in the same month a year earlier, Department of Finance figures showed on Friday.
For the first five months of the fiscal year, April through August, the deficit fell to C$1.12 billion from C$6.58 billion in the same period last year.
Prime Minister Stephen Harper said on Thursday that after accounting for several billions of dollars a year in family tax cuts and increased family benefits, the budget would register a small deficit in the current 2014-15 fiscal year and a small surplus in 2015-16.
The budget had swung into deficit because of the 2007-09 financial crisis but the size of the deficit has been falling steadily.
$1=$1.13 Canadian Reporting by Randall Palmer; Editing by Peter Galloway