The Financial Situation: a General Survey

F.W. Taussig
1918 The Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science  
Let me begin with a sketch in broad outline of the general situation, a survey of the expenditures which we shall have to face, of our available resources, the prospects for the immediate future and for the more distant future. Nothing more than an approximation to accuracy is now possible; but we can reach an approximation sufficient for an understanding of the tasks and burdens which confront us. In round numbers, the total appropriations which Congress has made for the fiscal year 1917-1918
more » ... cal year 1917-1918 come to nineteen billions of dollars. In some of the formal statements the total seems to be much less-no more than twelve billions. But this smaller sum includes only those expenditures which are directly and strictly our own and does not include loans to the allies which are expected to amount to some seven billions of dollars. It has been officially stated that up to October 1 these loans amounted to something over two billions of dollars; we are told to expect five billions more, or a total of seven billions. THE AMOUNT OF FUNDS PROVIDED Against this imposing sum of nineteen billions we have now provided, or undertaken to provide, perhaps eleven billions. The liberty bonds of the first issue produced two billions. Those of the second issue are expected to provide not less than three, nor more than five billions, and have in fact yielded $4,617,532,300. The total tax revenue, under the provisions of law in effect before the beginning of this year's special session of Congress, amounted to one and one-third billions. The additional revenue under the war revenue act which became law on the third of October is expected to be two and a half billions. In all, therefore, we have provided for something over four billions by taxation and five to seven billions by loans. These are stupendous sums; but nowadays we have to put our figures in terms of billions, no longer in
doi:10.1177/000271621807500102 fatcat:kfibhl2kondqdn6bulstgmdtgu