Episode 161
Mar 31, 2020

So, when are we getting that $1,200 check?

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Just don't expect it to line up with April rent.

It happened — in the hope of mitigating the economic damage of the COVID-19 crisis, President Trump signed a $2 trillion stimulus package, the biggest government relief package in history.

The bill calls for money to be sent directly to Americans — up to $1,200, more if you have kids. With rent and car payments and other bills due tomorrow, you might be wondering when that check’s going to show up.

The truth is not everyone’s getting a check, the package has some significant holes in it and the timing also depends on whether you’ve filed your taxes yet. Public policy expert Andrew Stettner, a senior fellow at The Century Foundation, joins us to talk it through. We’ll also talk about the expansion of unemployment insurance and the prospect of further direct payments down the line.

Plus: Kai explains annualizing data, we hear from a listener trying to support her small business through this crisis, and from another whose factory is set up to make ventilators — if he can figure out who in the government to talk to about it. Oh, and here’s Molly’s “Make Me Smile” for today.

Have we mentioned we’re doing daily podcasts now? When you’re done listening to those, you can also tell your Echo device to “make me smart” for our Alexa explainers. This week: the remote work gap, grocery delivery and … soap. Finally, don’t forget to subscribe to our newsletter. Here’s the latest issue.

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The team

Molly Wood Host
Jody Becker Interim Senior Producer
Tony Wagner Digital Producer
Sam Anderson Associate Producer