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A statement of a government's planned receipts and expenditures for some future period, normally a year. This is usually accompanied by a statement of actual receipts and expenditures for the previous period. The annual budget statement in the UK is a statement of the government's financial plans made in Parliament by the Chancellor of the Exchequer. The word budget originally meant the contents of a package; the budget is so called because it brings all the government's tax and spending plans together. A budget surplus means that total government receipts exceed total spending; a budget deficit means that spending exceeds receipts; and a balanced budget means that receipts and spending are equal. All calculations concerning budget surpluses and deficits depend on the definition used. Items which could on some definitions be regarded as part of the budget but are in fact excluded, for example government-guaranteed borrowing by other bodies, are termed off-budget items. See also balanced budget; budget constraint; unified budget.

Subjects: Economics.

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