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Canada  

Federal surplus larger than expected

Finance Minister Jim Flaherty says the federal budget surplus could be bigger than predicted in 2015.

Flaherty makes the prediction in an interview with CTV's Question Period.

The assessment falls in line with projections from the parliamentary budget office that came a month ago.

A Dec. 5 report from the PBO estimated the government could achieve a surplus of $4.6 billion by 2015, nearly $1 billion more than the estimate included in the November economic update.

In the CTV interview, aired Sunday, Flaherty said Canada could have a bigger surplus than projected if both the domestic and U.S. economies continue to gain strength.

The Harper Conservatives are relying on balancing the books to help propel the party through a federal election campaign that's scheduled for the fall of 2015.

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