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  • Budget gap to approach $500 billion...

    * Budget gap to approach $500 billion... * Deficits lead to record borrowing by the US... * Commodity currencies take divergent paths... * India raises rates... ** Budget gap to approach $500 billion... Good day... The currency markets were mostly flat yesterday with all of the majors stuck in fairly tight trading ranges. With no economic data released, the trading desks were mostly dead. The story which dominated the screens yesterday was the announcement of a record $490 billion US budget gap. The Bush administration said the US budget deficit will widen to a record next year, leaving a deep budget hole. The bigger shortfall reflects dwindling tax receipts because of the US economic slowdown, the cost of the $168 billion economic stimulus package and spending on the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. The shortfall reflects a deterioration of the budget over the past seven years. Bush inherited a budget surplus of $128 billion when he took office in 2001. The budget worsened almost immediately, because of recession, the Sept 11 attacks, the beginning of the war in Afghanistan and, later, the war in Iraq....