Tenn. Revenue Collections Up in March
Tennessee revenue collections continued to exceed budgeted expectations in March. Finance and Administration Commissioner Mark Emkes reported today that overall March revenues were $936.1 million, which is $33.1 million more than the state budgeted. Total tax collections in March were 2.2% above the previous year.
“March collections continued to reflect strong corporate profits from last year, but also reflect very modest retail activity for the month of February, when spending occurred,” Emkes said. “We believe the slowdown in retail spending reflects the two percent increase in the federal payroll tax in January and temporary erosion in consumer confidence, most likely brought about by the federal budget sequestration process.
“While year-to-date corporate tax collections remain very encouraging, we must remember that about a fourth of them typically – but not always - occur in the month of April. Due to the volatility of our corporate tax collections, we will be extremely diligent in monitoring our spending patterns for the remainder of this year, maintaining a balanced budget and financially posturing ourselves for the future.”
On an accrual basis, March is the eighth month in the 2012-2013 fiscal year.
The general fund was over collected by $35.4 million and the four other funds were under collected by $2.3 million.
Sales tax collections were $2.8 million less than the estimate for March. The March growth rate was positive 0.11%. For eight months revenues are under collected by $33.1 million. The year-to-date growth rate for eight months was positive 1.77%.
Franchise and excise taxes combined were $42.7 million above the budgeted estimate of $168.8 million. For eight months revenues are over collected by $156.5 million. The year-to-date growth rate for eight months was positive 9.12%.
Gasoline and motor fuel collections for March increased by 0.75% and were $0.2 million above the budgeted estimate. For eight months revenues are under collected by $15.2 million.
Tobacco taxes collections were $5.9 million under the budgeted estimate of $24.7 million. For eight months revenues are under collected in the amount of $10.7 million.
Inheritance and estate taxes were over collected by $2.2 million for the month. Year to date collections for eight months are $12.8 million more than the budgeted estimate.
Privilege tax collections were $2.2 million more than the March estimate, and on a year to date basis, August through March, collections are $17.8 million above the estimate.
All other taxes were under collected by a net of $5.5 million.
Year-to-date collections for eight months were $127.1 million more than the budgeted estimate. The general fund was over collected by $141.6 million and the four other funds were under collected by $14.5 million.
The budgeted revenue estimates for 2012-2013 are based on the State Funding Board’s consensus recommendation of December 19th, 2011 and adopted by the second session of the 107th General Assembly in April 2012. They are available on the state’s website at http://www.tn.gov/finance/bud/budget.html.
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Last Update on May 05, 2015 07:28 GMT
ECONOMY-THE DAY AHEAD
WASHINGTON (AP) --Some big earnings and economic reports are due out today. Later this morning, the Commerce Department will release its international trade data for March. In February, the U.S. trade deficit-- the amount by which the value of imports exceeds the value of exports-- fell almost 17 percent to $35 billion. Also this morning, the Institute for Supply Management will release its service sector index for April. In March, U.S. service firms expanded at a slightly slower pace than the month before and the service index slipped to 56.5, though any reading over 50 signals expansion in economic activity.
Freddie Mac and Walt Disney will report their quarterly financial results before the market opens.
FEDERAL RESERVE-LEAK PROBE
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen is disclosing that she met with a financial analyst at the center of an investigation into a possible leak of confidential interest-rate information. But she says the meeting occurred several months before the private Fed discussions at issue took place, and dealt with general economic matters.
The information came in a letter Monday from Yellen to senior House Republicans who are investigating whether market-sensitive information was deliberately leaked from the Fed's interest-rate policy meeting in September 2012.
The lawmakers had requested the names of Fed officials and staff who had contact with the analyst's firm, Medley Global Advisors, from June through October 2012. Yellen said several names were provided confidentially to the staff of House Financial Services Committee, and that hers is on the list.
GULF OIL SPILL-MEXICAN STATES
NEW ORLEANS (AP) -- A federal appeals court has upheld a lower court's dismissal of a lawsuit against BP and other companies by three Mexican states over the 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill.
The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeal upheld a 2013 district court ruling.
The courts held that, because Mexico's federal government owns the affected property, the states -- Veracruz, Tamaulipas and Quintana Roo -- don't have standing to file the suit.
The opinion, dated May 1, notes that that the Mexican federal government filed a similar lawsuit, which is progressing through the court system.
The ruling said the 2010 suit sought alleged damages or future damages, including oil spill response costs and harm to sea life and shorelines.
A BP spokesman said the company was pleased with the ruling.
GAS DRILLING-WATER CONTAMINATION
UNDATED (AP) -- A new study says toxic fluids used in drilling and hydraulic fracturing likely escaped an unlined borehole and migrated thousands of feet into residential drinking-water wells in Pennsylvania.
At least three wells were contaminated with dangerous levels of methane and other substances in 2010. The incident was one of several involving Chesapeake Energy that prompted state regulators to levy a record $1 million fine against the driller.
Penn State University researchers say they detected minute amounts of a chemical compound often found in drilling and fracking fluids. Their study was published Monday in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
The study does not implicate the fracking technique itself. Researchers say the toxic fluid probably escaped the gas well while it was being drilled.
NEW YORK (AP) -- U.S. antitrust regulators say Holcim and Lafarge agreed to sell assets including cement plants and transportation assets to complete their merger, which will make the world's largest cement company.
The Federal Trade Commission says the combination of the two companies would have reduced competition for portland cement, a component of concrete, in many U.S. markets. It also would have reduced competition for a specialty type of cement called slag cement.
Lafarge will sell its Continental Cement business along with a cement plant, a quarry and some distribution assets, while Holcim will sell several cement plants and distribution terminals.
Holcim Ltd. is based in Switzerland and Lafarge SA is based in France. The companies hope to combine in July. Together they will have about $34 billion in annual revenue.
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