Each month, the Tennessee Department of Finance & Administration (F&A) reports how much tax revenue the state collected for the previous month. These reports help policymakers and the public understand how actual revenue collections compare to estimates from the start of the fiscal year. The Sycamore Institute’s Tennessee Tax Revenue Tracker, updated monthly, provides a quick visual snapshot of each report.
Why Revenue Forecasts Are So Important
Forecasting how much tax revenue Tennessee will collect in a given year or month is a difficult but important part of maintaining a balanced budget, which the state constitution requires. F&A’s revenue forecasts have a major influence on decisions about spending. Overestimating revenues could force state policymakers to cut spending mid-year.
On the other hand, underestimating revenues creates unplanned surpluses which can be spent the following year or saved in the rainy day fund. The trade-off of a surplus is that policymakers may have preferred to either spend the money or reduce taxes in the current year.
See our Tennessee State Budget Primer for more on the implications of state revenue estimates and how accurate these estimates have been in recent years. To learn how F&A creates its revenue forecasts, read the department’s methodology here.
* This post was originally published on September 26, 2023 and will be updated for each month of FY 2024.