The new year may bring a small tax cut for Massachusetts residents.

    The state revenue department is announcing the state's income tax will be automatically lowered from the current 5.25 percent to 5.2 percent on Jan. 1.

    The automatic reduction occurs if state tax collections exceed benchmarks over a period of several months. A spokeswoman for the department says it appears the latest numbers, including the month of November, will meet the threshold for .05 percent reduction in the tax.

    The last time that happened was in 2011, prompting a cut in the tax from 5.3 percent to 5.25 percent.

    The state previously announced that tax collections through October were running $273 million ahead of benchmarks for the current fiscal year. (Associated Press)