Federal Government Spending

Fiscal Year 2016
Budget Category $ Billions As a % of Outlays
Health 1,062 29
Social Security 888 24
Defense 591 16
Income Security 509 14
Interest 223 6
Other 121 3
Transportation 90 3
Education 120 3
International Affairs 49 1
Environment 34 1
Totals 3,687 100%

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Budget Category $ Billions % of Outlays
Health 1,062


Social Security 888



Source:  Final Monthly Treasury Statement September 2015 * Percentage column numbers might be altered to allow total to equal 100%

In FY2015, the federal government collected $3 trillion, 25 billion in taxes and borrowed $439 billion to pay for the above spending. 

Notes on Spending Categories

Health includes Medicare, Medicaid, ACA exchange subsidies, veterans health programs, and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP).

International Affairs includes foreign aid, development and humanitarian assistance, international security assistance, and conduct of foreign affairs

Income Security includes unemployment compensation, housing assistance, food stamps, nutrition programs, general retirement and disability insurance (excluding Social Security) and other income security programs.

Interest is the amount spent by the government to service the publicly held national debt. Just as you might pay interest on a mortgage, student loan or credit card, the government has to pay interest on money it borrows to cover budget deficits.

Other includes most domestic homeland security, science, space and technology, National Institutes of Health, energy, agriculture, commerce and housing credits, disaster relief, job training and social services, veterans benefits and services (except health benefits), justice and other government spending.

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