OTTAWA (Reuters) - The Canadian government ran a budget deficit of C$744 million ($653 million) in the first six months of the 2014/15 fiscal year, down from C$10.35 billion in the April-September period of 2013, the finance department said on Friday.
Earlier this month Ottawa forecast a C$2.9 billion deficit for the current fiscal year, which started April 1, and promised a C$1.9 billion surplus for the following year as Canada goes into a federal election scheduled for October 2015.
In September, Canada ran a budget surplus of C$379 million compared with a shortfall of C$3.77 billion in September 2013. Revenues that month increased by C$1.15 billion, or 5.4 percent, on higher personal and corporate income tax revenues.
Expenses dropped by C$2.88 billion, or 12.8 percent, largely due to the fact that in September 2013 the government had set aside money to help clean up the aftermath of a major flood in Alberta.
Reporting by David Ljunggren; Editing by Peter Galloway