Refunds tend to be bigger early in the tax season, since those expecting a lot of money back are most likely to file first.
Over the course of the next few months, nearly 8 out of 10 filers will get a refund.
Normally, the IRS cuts its refund checks pretty quickly. But this year, because of budget cuts, IRS Commissioner John Koskinen has warned that there could be a delay in issuing some of them.
The agency said 9 out of 10 refunds will go out within 21 days from when a return is filed. But refunds for paper returns — which normally take four to six weeks — could take at least 7 weeks this year.
The vast majority of the returns filed so far this year (13.3 million) were filed electronically.
Overall, the IRS receives about 150 million returns a year.