Number of the Day Shows Impact of Stimulus Stalemate
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That’s how many days it’s been since anyone was eligible for extra unemployment benefits from the federal government.
Emergency federal initiatives provided out-of-work Americans with an extra $300-$600 a week to supplement their regular state-provided unemployment benefits for most of the COVID-19 pandemic, but the most recent program, which provided $300 a week for six weeks, was only set to last for the workweek through Sept. 5. In the absence of a new package of relief measures—the subject of months of failed negotiations in Congress—people on unemployment insurance are getting just state-administered benefits, which average $305 a week nationally. (Though some states are still doling out funds from the last supplemental program, they are retroactive.)
While the unemployment rate fell to 7.9% in September, down from 8.4% in August, there are still 12.6 million people out of work, the Bureau of Labor Statistics said Friday. On Thursday night, Democrat lawmakers passed a $2.2 trillion bill in the House that would reinstate the $600 supplement, but Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, the Republican leader, called it a “liberal wishlist.”