As the coronavirus impacts businesses around the world, U.S. Congress has passed over a $2 trillion-dollar relief bill to boost businesses and help employees push through the sudden contraction that this has brought onto the U.S. Unemployment rates drastically went from less 3% to 5.5% in less than a week.
Among the many provisions in the bill is the extension of unemployment insurance and the additional money that will be coming for people on unemployment. Many state’s unemployment benefits add up to $389 per week for up to 20 weeks as a result of the Social Security Act. This new bill, the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act, allows for an additional $600 and allows for the benefits to be extended to a maximum of 39 weeks or just under 10 months on top of a lump sum of $1200. Those laid off or furloughed are eligible for these benefits and more importantly those who quit because of the virus.
There is valid criticism however that this bill might encourage employers to not hire people back, or worse that the benefits might keep the unemployed from coming back into the workplace for a number of months, hurting the future economy. Some critics also believe that it’s not enough to bail out the people and more for businesses.
$2 Trillion dollars is a lot of money to spend to make sure people have their livelihoods or their jobs during and post coronavirus lockdowns.