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Thursday, December 2, 2021

Stimulus Check: Is The Fourth One Coming?

The stimulus checks are being issued to the Americans due to the ongoing pandemic, to help them meet their ends. President Biden has strongly pushed the nation to encourage vaccinations while the Delta variant is wreaking havoc.

The economy has returned to its initial position in early 2020 even though inflation and shortages exist.

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Unemployment exceeds pre-pandemic levels, even with jobs widely available in certain sectors. The federal unemployment bonus ended in early September, but millions of people remain short of food and behind on bills. A fourth stimulus check would help the people in such a dire situation.

Some states like California have recognized this need and provided additional assistance.

The Main Job Of The Stimulus Check

The stimulus checks were intended to ease COVID’s economic impact and support the economy. The 3rd round of relief payments started back in March, courtesy of the American Rescue Plan. Over the following months, about 169 million people received up to $1,400 individually. That accounted for nearly all of the $422 billion set aside. 

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The US economy grew at a rate of 6.7% annually, in the second quarter of 2021. That continues the torrid pace from the first quarter, which saw 6.4 percent growth. 

The pandemic has highlighted the imbalance across the economy. While many households have flourished during COVID, many others have fallen behind where they were in early 2020. 

Financial insecurity is widespread along with the loss of jobs and working hours. 9% of the Americans reported a shortage of food in the houses in the last week. 16% of renters have fallen behind their rents which includes a massive 23% of renters who have children.

A group of Democratic Senators, including Ron Wyden, Elizabeth Warren, and Bernie Sanders sent a letter to President Joe Biden at the end of March requesting for recurring direct payments and automatic unemployment insurance extensions tied to economic conditions.

There have also been talks about automatic payment of stimulus checks that would be sent when specific economic metrics reach certain thresholds. These triggers would make stimulus checks a reactive force in countering economic dips, sparing struggling Americans from Congressional delays.

All of the tacit and explicit support for stimulus checks keeps the possibility alive. The support doesn’t make a fourth stimulus check likely, however. 

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