The 1999 fiscal-year budget surplus weighed in at $115 billion, much larger than the $99 billion surplus analysts predicted over the summer. The announcement was made by President Clinton on Monday.
Clinton asked Republicans to band together with him to determine how best to use the surplus. The difference in the projected versus actual figure was attributed to the strong American economy and unexpectedly high tax revenues.
This year also marks the second consecutive year-and the first time since 1956-in which two years of surplus actually occurred.
Although it is likely Clinton still would hold off on cutting taxes, Jack Lew, director of the White House Office and Management and Budget, commented that he does not favor necessarily using the surplus to fix the Social Security Trust Fund.