Australia's finances have taken a beating as falling prices for iron ore, the country's single biggest export earner, have eaten into company profits and wages.
Some A$52 billion in tax receipts were lost over the four years to 2017/18 according to the budget, with A$20 billion of that coming from the plunge in iron ore prices.
Ged Kearney, President of the Australian Council of Trade Unions, blasted the budget for not offsetting fresh cuts with any significant new revenue streams.
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"Last year the government took a sledgehammer to the budget, this year it's a chisel that is cut, cut, cutting away," she told reporters.
Some analysts had questioned whether Australia's coveted triple-A credit rating from all three major agencies might come under pressure without a credible path back to surplus, speculation Hockey slapped down in an interview with Reuters earlier this month.
Ratings agencies Moody's and Standard and Poor's said that the budget was unlikely to affect Australia's credit rating.