Looking back at yesterday’s post, I noticed that the NDP flyer I received also argued that the Conservatives have run 8 deficits. Apparently nobody has time to print new flyers, even when they’re wrong. But how did both the NDP and the Liberals get it wrong? There’s partisanship, obviously. Yet given Canada’s recent economic troubles with the fall in oil prices, a deficit doesn’t seem that crazy. Time for another budget post!

There’s this one column on the fiscal transactions sheet that strikes me as a little odd. It’s called “Other comprehensive income”, and it begins in 2006-07, not long after the Conservatives took power. As I understand it, other comprehensive income represents asset changes and other “miscellaneous” things that do contribute towards the debt, but not the budget balance. And for 2014-15, that figure is well into the negative.

Federal Budget Balances and Other Comprehensive Income

Maybe I’m being conspiratorial, and maybe I just don’t understand what other comprehensive income is – it’s very likely. But isn’t it highly coincidental that during the election this peculiar figure goes far enough into the red to cancel out the budget surplus?

Source: Department of Finance, Fiscal Reference Tables September 2015