* Primary fiscal deficit projected for 2016 - media
* Rousseff drops plan for financial transactions tax
* Lack of fiscal savings raises risk of rating downgrade (Adds media report on 2016 budget deficit)
BRASILIA, Aug 30 (Reuters) - Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff will send Congress a 2016 budget with a primary deficit after she abandoned plans to reinstate an unpopular tax to raise revenues next year, Brazilian media reported on Sunday.
Rousseff’s economic team decided it was best to present realistic budget numbers to avoid losing further credibility in the market, the O Globo, Folha de S.Paulo and Estado de S.Paulo newspapers reported, citing presidential aides.
Without additional revenues, government officials warned last week it would be impossible to meet a fiscal savings target of 0.7 percent of gross domestic product next year as originally planned in the budget, which must be sent to Congress by Monday.
The absence of a primary fiscal surplus - the budget balance before interest payments - will increase the risk of Brazil losing its prized investment-grade credit rating next year.
Over the weekend, Rousseff dropped the idea of reintroducing a 0.38 percent tax on financial transactions, known as CPMF, after the plan ran into a barrage of criticism even from within her coalition, the newspapers said.
The president’s press office said it would not comment on the tax issue until Monday.
Finance Minister Joaquim Levy said on Saturday the CPMF tax was needed to bridge Brazil’s fiscal gap in a severe recession that has reduced government revenues.
A senior government official told Reuters on Friday that Brazil would not meet its 2016 fiscal savings target unless the CPMF, which was abolished by Congress in 2007, was reinstated.
But business leaders, opposition politicians and even her main coalition ally, the PMDB party led by Vice President Michel Temer, opposed the plan to revive the unpopular tax, and the government ran out of time to negotiate a bill with Congress.
The newspapers estimated the shortfall in the 2016 budget at about 80 billion reais .
$1 = 3.5809 Brazilian reais Reporting by Anthony Boadle; Editing by Alison Williams and Jacqueline Wong