'The jobs simply are not there': Economy heading for disaster if $600 unemployment boost expires
Michael Raphael/Public domain

On Tuesday, The New York Times walked through the potential dire consequences if Congress allows the extended $600/week unemployment benefits in the coronavirus stimulus package to lapse.

"With economic conditions again deteriorating, that life preserver will disappear within days if Congress doesn’t act to extend it. That could prompt a wave of evictions and inflict more financial harm on millions of Americans while further damaging the economy," wrote Ben Casselman. "Even the threat of a lapse in benefits could prove harmful, economists warn, by forcing households to make precautionary spending cuts."

"The benefits program, Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation, expires at the end of July. But because of a quirk in the calendar, workers in most states won’t qualify for the payments after this week. Most will be left with regular unemployment benefits, which total only a few hundred dollars a week in many states," continued the report. "That means that more than 20 million Americans could soon see their weekly income fall by half or more at a time when the unemployment rate remains higher than in any period since World War II."

Republicans, led by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), have shown little interest in fast-tracking another round of stimulus.

The report noted many people who will suffer if the program lapses, like Chicago gym housekeeper Jacob Perlman. “I have no idea why Congress would wait until a few days before the checks are going to run out ... the jobs simply are not there right now,” he said.

You can read more here.