Federal finances at a glance

2020 results

Financing statement, financing of expenditure

in bn

2016 results

The COVID-19 pandemic led to lower receipts and substantial additional expenditure for the Confederation. Therefore, a record-breaking financing deficit of 15.8 billion ensued in 2020. Economic growth was severely hampered in 2020 by the COVID-19 pandemic and the measures taken to contain it. Instead of the anticipated nominal economic growth of 2.3% of GDP, the final result was a decline of 3.4%. Because of the economic downturn, receipts were lower than the previous year (-4.0%, or -3.0 bn) and below budget (-3.6 bn). Expenditure was up by 16.4 billion (+23%) on the previous year and was also higher than budgeted for 2020 (+12.5 bn).

A cyclical deficit of 2.9 billion would have been permitted in the ordinary budget because of the economic downturn. In actual fact, there was an ordinary financing deficit of 1.2 billion, which means that the debt brake requirements for the ordinary budget were exceeded (structural surplus of 1.6 bn). Expenditure for tackling the COVID-19 pandemic totaled 15 billion in 2020 (see Overview). It was incurred mainly as extraordinary expenditure (14.7 bn). As the COVID-19 pandemic caused an extraordinary situation outside the Confederation's control, it was possible for the debt brake exception to be applied. This ensures that the proper performance of tasks is not supplanted by extraordinary payment requirements. Extraordinary expenditure is debited to the amortization account, which had a deficit of 9.8 billion at the end of 2020.

The substantial funding requirements were covered by the Confederation increasing its debt (+6.6 bn) and at the same time reducing its non-administrative assets (-8.7 bn). Gross debt thus rose to 103.6 billion (+6.6 bn). Net debt takes both factors into account (gross debt less non-administrative assets) and increased by 15.3 billion.

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Last modification 19.03.2021

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