Brazil’s fiscal performance improved in August, putting the country back on track to meet 2017 deficit goals, the Central Bank said Friday. The public sector posted an August primary budget deficit of R$9.5 billion, down sharply from R$16.1 billion in July. August performance was helped by a major boost in tax revenues. Revenues rose, in part, because of a government program to collect tax arrears and, in part, because of an improving economy. The 12-month public sector deficit as of July reached a perilous R$170.5 billion. In August, the 12-month figure eased sharply to R$157.8 billion. Brazil’s targets for 2017 are a primary deficit no higher than R$159 billion for the federal government and no higher than R$163 billion for the public sector as a whole, including federal, state and municipal governments and government-controlled companies.
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