updated 6/16/2005 6:03:37 PM ET 2005-06-16T22:03:37

The government has hit a financial milestone — taking in more money in tax revenue in a single day than ever before.

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After totaling it all up, the Treasury Department announced Thursday that it had collected $61 billion on Wednesday. That surpassed the old one-day record of $56 billion set on Dec. 15, 2000.

The bulk of the revenue — $49 billion — came from corporate tax payments, also a one-day record for such receipts. The old mark was $46 billion set last Dec. 15. Wednesday's date, June 15, and Dec. 15 are both deadlines for corporations to make quarterly tax payments.

The government's coffers have been swelling this year as tax receipts from both individuals and corporations have been on the rise, reflecting an improving economy. Because of those increases, this year's federal deficit is expected to fall to around $350 billion, down from the $413 billion record in dollar terms set in 2004.

Treasury Secretary John Snow said the new record in tax revenue was "good news for our efforts to reduce the budget deficit" and further evidence of the strength of the economy.

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