! Washington , Rabi'I 13, 1435, Jan 14, 2014 , SPA -- The U.S. government last month posted the biggest budget surplus for any December on record, fueled by payments from government-controlled housing finance giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac . The mortgage-finance companies, which were saved by $187 billion in taxpayer money after they were placed under government control during the 2008 financial crisis, made huge dividend payments last month in return for the government support they received. The payments helped the government collect $53 billion more in revenue in December than it spent, the Treasury Department said Monday. Under the terms of the rescue, the government receives a majority of the mortgage giants' quarterly profits. The two companies made payments to the Treasury totaling nearly $40 billion at the end of 2013. For the first three months of the government's fiscal budget year, the Treasury posted a deficit of $173.6 billion , down 41 percent from the $293 billion deficit from October through December 2012 . --SPA 11:26 LOCAL TIME 08:26 GMT All Rights Reversed for Saudi Press Agency Provided by Syndigate.info , an Albawaba.com company
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