It’s the last month of $600-a-week unemployment benefits. What happens next?
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At the end of this month, millions of unemployed Americans will get their last $600-a-week federal pandemic unemployment check, unless Congress acts to extend the program.
Overall, jobless benefits are pumping about $100 billion per month into the U.S. economy. What’s that going to mean for people struggling with unemployment with bills due?
Jody Solell is 64 and works for a solar energy installer in Maryland. He was furloughed in March, and recently got called back for a very partial reopening — just 2 1/2 hours one week and 2 hours another.
Solell is still getting $880 a week on unemployment, which includes the $600 in federal pandemic benefits.
What will his family do if that runs out at the end of July?
“Uh, I haven’t even thought about that,” he said. “That’s why they make credit cards.”
Financial advisory firm The Ascent has surveyed unemployed workers and research analyst Dann Albright said, “almost two-thirds could go less than three months without the extra $600 dollars. They would borrow more money, and take more drastic cuts in their expenses.”
A recent survey by the Urban Institute finds more than 4 in 10 American households have suffered job- or income-loss during the pandemic.
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