Exchequer figures for the first nine months of the year show a deficit of €20.1 billion. The figure is €965 million off target. Expenditure for the year so far stands at €34.7 billion. The Department of Finance is forecasting a shortfall of two billion on projections for the end of the year. Michael McGrath who is assistant secretary at the Department of Finance said the fall in VAT of €2 billion compared to this time last year is due to missed payments.