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Puerto Rico Treasury reports $656.1M in net income in November ’20

The Puerto Rico Treasury Department reported net income to the General Fund during the month of November — the most recent figures available — totaled $656.1 million.

Agency Secretary Francisco Parés confirmed that the figure represented $127.8 million, or 24%, over the monthly projection based on the budgetary method.

Meanwhile, collections accrued during the first months of the fiscal year — July to November — exceeded by $698.1 million, or 21%, the estimated figure provided.

“The accumulated income as of November reached $4.0 billion, of which $479.3 million is income corresponding to payments deferred by measures approved to mitigate the effects of the pandemic in many sectors, from March to June of last fiscal year,” Parés said.

“The revenue level for November represents a record figure for this month, mainly due to the fact that the Sales Tax Financing Corp. (known as COFINA) debt service was fulfilled in mid-October. That means that, as of that date, the Sales and Use Tax collections corresponding to the 5.5% rate from which COFINA is paid, were deposited into the General Fund,” he said.

The sales tax-generating sectors that performed the best in November were individuals and motor vehicle excise taxes, among others. Sales and use tax exceeded the monthly forecast by $96.1 million, or 72%.

When comparing sales and use tax collections in November versus the same month in 2019, this year’s results were $101.2 million, or 79%, over last year’s collections, he said.

Parés also said that both the Sales and Use Tax and other consumption-based taxes have shown an upward trend since the beginning of the fiscal year on July 1, 2020.

Among the factors associated with this performance are the influx of funds from locally and federally approved programs to mitigate the negative economic effects of the pandemic, the disbursement of funds for reconstruction work, and other elements such as changes that given the mandated confinement have influenced the use of electronic payment methods that could affect compliance.

Individual tax revenue exceeded the tax predictions in November by $39.9 million, or 38%. Furthermore, when comparing November 2020 income with what was collected during the same month last year, it showed an increase of $18.9 million, or 15%.

Meanwhile, motor vehicle tax collections for November 2020 exceeded the fiscal forecast by $27.6 million, or 123%.

“We’ve consistently seen how the performance of this line item has surpassed what was collected last fiscal year. This means that collections during the first five months of fiscal year 2021 exceed by $44.1 million, or 24%, the collections for the same period in fiscal year 2020,” Parés said.

During the period from July to November, tax revenue generated by corporations exceeded forecasted projections by $91.6 million when compared to what was reported during the same year-ago period. Revenues during this fiscal year are expected to reach $245 million in deferred payments that otherwise would have been recorded during the period from March to June of last year, he said.

During the same July to November 2020 period, individual tax contributions exceeded projections by $64 million, which is 8% more than the fiscal forecast for the accrued period. This fiscal year is including $198 million in payments received for the deferrals granted in fiscal year 2020, he said.

The Sales and Use Tax collections for the period was the “best performing” line item, he said. Collections exceeded the amount reported during the same year-ago period by $226.1 million, or 43.7%. Of the current figure, $36 million were attributed to postponement measures.

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This story was written by our staff based on a press release.

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