The federal government notched a $1.1 trillion deficit in fiscal year 2012 — the fourth straight year over $1 trillion — according to a preliminary estimate that the Congressional Budget Office released Friday.

That’s still an improvement over 2011, when the deficit reached $1.3 trillion, and it marks the lowest deficit of President Obama’s four years in office.

The CBO report said the better picture was due to higher revenue from taxes. Spending was about the same in 2012 as it was a year earlier.

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