The Wall Street Journal is calling this week a make-or-break week for the United States.
While Congress has passed a $2 trillion stimulus package, but if the cash doesn’t hit people’s accounts for three weeks, that means the financial battle for Americans will persist as bills come due.
“Rent is due. Utilities are due. Credit card bills are due April 1,” said liquor store owner Hadley Douglas, who was forced to layoff two staffers. “The deadline is looming large and it is petrifying.”
Some landlords are helping as much as possible with free rent for a month or a reduced price. Banks are excusing full payments, telling companies with hefty loans to pay the interest in April and retool in May. But one doesn’t understand why he’s the one expected to help out.
“Why is the landlord the first line in bailing them out?,” said Corey Bialow, who owns a stake in 12 properties in several states. He explained to the Journal he will “be on the hook for additional costs beyond mortgages such as real estate taxes, maintenance and insurance and will have to dip into his savings to pay for these.”
“Tyson Evans, a 23-year-old line cook for Cheesecake Factory in Indianapolis, Indiana, said he and fellow workers were stunned to learn about the furloughs,” the Journal reported. “He said they believed the company would continue to employ them despite a drop in business. He is now filing for unemployment.”
This unemployment claims for the week spiked from an astounding 3.5 percent unemployment rate in Feb. 2020, to record-setting 3.3 million unemployment claims.
Mortgage companies have been told to pause foreclosures amid the crisis, but the question remains about what May and June will look like. The virus isn’t expected to have a vaccine until next year.
“It’s extremely stressful. It’s crazy: I’m more exhausted now than I was before when I had a job,” said Guy Hillel, who was laid off as a food and beverage manager at a hotel in New York.
“Many business owners and individuals said they have little in the way of cash reserves or savings for bills that come due in the next few days. Some wonder whether the aid will be enough,” the Journal reported.
The Small Business Administration is providing interest-free loans but there are large-scale companies suffering as well. As Tyson Evans explained, the Cheesecake Factory is struggling, as is Macy’s and Nike, according to the report.
“The bills are now coming due for big companies and millions of laid-off workers. Decisions made in the next few days will shape how coronavirus impacts the economy,” the Journal explained.