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Fourth stimulus check news summary: 24 May 2021

Update:
WASHINGTON, DC - MAY 22: U.S. President Joe Biden walks on the Ellipse to board Marine One on May 22, 2021 in Washington, DC. President Joe Biden, first lady Jill Biden, son Hunter Biden, and grandkids took off from the Ellipse heading to Camp David for t

US stimulus checks live updates | Monday 24 May 2021

Headlines:

- US Dollar drops to lowest level in three months

- Negotiations on the American Jobs Plan are stalling as Republican opposition grows (full story)

- Payments for the Child Tax Credit are around the corner (full story)

- Florida passes bill that includes three sales tax holidays (full story)

- The IRS tax return deadline of 17 May has now passed; however some states have issued extensions (read more)

- Retail giants report positive economic outlook after stimulus check influx and reopening boost

- California sends out $600/$1,200 stimulus checks as part of the Golden State Stimulus scheme 

- You can track your third stimulus check by using the IRS' online Get My Payment portal

Keep up to date with the latest US and global vaccine newswith our covid-19 vaccine live feed

Take a look at some of our related articles:

US Senate Republicans to meet Tuesday on White House infrastructure talks

US Senate Republicans are due to meet on Tuesday to determine their next steps on bipartisan infrastructure talks following last week's White House offer to pare down President Joe Biden's sweeping $2.25 trillion proposal to $1.7 trillion.

dollar

Dollar drifts lower as Fed speakers soothe inflation fears

The dollar coasted at the bottom of its recent range on Tuesday, as softer-than-expected U.S. data and fresh insistence from Federal Reserve officials that policy would stay on hold allayed investor fears about inflation forcing interest rates higher.

Investors are heavily short dollars in the belief that low U.S. rates will drive cash abroad as the world recovers from then pandemic. They have become leery of adding to positions after an April leap in inflation cast doubt on the policy outlook, but seemed to find reassurance in data and Fed remarks overnight.

How to contact the unemployment office in New York: Phone, Email, and Postal Address 

US News

How to contact the unemployment office in New York: Phone, Email, and Postal Address 

Have questions regarding your unemployment benefits in New York?

Check out our coverage for details on how to reach the Department of Labor. 

Which Democrats and Republicans are supporting a fourth stimulus check?

CORONAVIRUS STIMULUS CHECKS

Which Democrats and Republicans are supporting a fourth stimulus check?

Which Democrats and Republicans are supporting a fourth stimulus check?

The divide between those who support a fourth direct payment can be drawn through party lines. Over 80 Democrats are now calling on the federal government to send a fourth check, but no Republicans have announced their support. 

Read our full coverage on the debate here.

Unemployment benefits: What changes are coming in June? 

US News

Unemployment benefits: What changes are coming in June? 

What changes to unemployment benefits are coming in June?

In April 2020, the US unemployment rate rose to 13.6%. Over a fifth of the workforce found themselves unemployed in Hawaii, Nevada, and Michigan.  Nearly a year later the percent has fallen to 5.4 nationally.

States that have seen the largest decreases in unemployed workers since April 2020: 

1. Wyoming: 5.5% to 5.4%, 0.1 decrease 

2. Connecticut: 8.6% to 8.10%, 0.5 decrease

3. New Mexico: 10% to 8.2%, 1.8 decrease

4. Maryland: 9% to 6.2%, 2.8 decrease

5. District of Columbia: 11.1% to 7.5%, 3.6 decrease

Of these states, Wyoming is the only one that has announced they will be ending all additional federal unemployment benefits. Read our coverage on the changes here.  

 

Fourth stimulus check: what have Democrats said about a new relief bill?

US News

Fourth stimulus check: what have Democrats said about a new relief bill?

Fourth stimulus check: what have Democrats said about a new relief bill?

As negotiations between the White House and Republican leaders on the American Jobs Plan continue, many wonder if a fourth direct payment could be coming their way. 

On Monday 17 May, seven members of the House Ways and Means Committee sent a letter to President Biden urging him to include the a fourth stimulus check in the AFP. The letter highlighted that “direct payments and enhanced unemployment insurance (UI) in particular have served as lifelines to families and workers that have had their lives upended by the pandemic.” The leaders cited studies that show that the $1,400 checks sent in March will keep eleven million people out of poverty this year and that a “fourth and fifth check” increase those numbers to more than twenty million.

Read our full coverage to understand where the negotiations stand.

President Biden touts job growth since he took office. During the first three month average number of jobs added to the economy rose to more than half a million. During the last three months of the Trump administration the average stood at around 65,000. 

$3000/$3600 Child Tax Credit: how and when will the payments be sent?

US News

$3000/$3600 Child Tax Credit: how and when will the payments be sent?

Eligible to receive the enhanced Child Tax Credit?

Payments are set to begin on 15 July. 

Eighty-eight percent of children will benefit from the new CTC, which experts believe could have positive impacts on rates of child poverty. The expansion will extend the credit to over twenty-four million children, the majority of which are Black and brown.

Read our full coverage on who is eligible and what the changes made to the CTC mean for families across the country. 

New York Times reports on the impact being excluded from federal aid had on the immigrant population in the US' most populated city. 

Child and dependent care tax credit 2021: how to claim $8,000 or $16,000

AMERICAN RESCUE PLAN

Child and dependent care tax credit 2021: how to claim $8,000 or $16,000

Many Americans that need to incur expenses to have their children or loved ones looked after while they go out to earn a living will want to keep track of those expenses in 2021. The Child and Dependent Care Credit (CDCC) has been increased to allow for taxpayers to write off expenses of up to $8,000 for one child or dependent and $16,000 for two or more.

Full details

Child and Dependent Care Credit 2021: who qualifies for it? 

US News

Child and Dependent Care Credit 2021: who qualifies for it? 

The Child and Dependent Care Credit (CDCC) allows those who are fully employed a tax break if they have contracted a caretaker to look after their children thirteen and younger or a or “dependent who isn't able to care for himself or herself.” Other types of expenses made to care for a qualifying individual can also be claimed. 

Changes made under the American Rescue Plan increased eligibility for the Child and Dependent Care Credit in the 2021 fiscal year.

Full details

How much are the stimulus supplemental payments for the 2020 Tax Filers?

CORONAVIRUS STIMULUS CHECKS

How much are the stimulus supplemental payments for the 2020 Tax Filers?

The IRS has sent out more than 165 million stimulus payments in the third round of Economic Impact Payments, over six million of them “plus-up” payments.

As the agency processes returns and updates information some households have become eligible for a larger payment than was sent triggering a supplemental or “plus-up” payment.

So how much are these "plus-up" payments?
 

Congressional progressive urging Biden to pass next stimulus without Republicans

President Biden has made it a point that he wants to pass his infrastructure bill with bipartisan support. However, even after making a counteroffer, trimming half a trillion off his original proposal, Republicans are still set against it. Besides the price tag one of the main sticking points for GOP lawmakers is the inclusion of what they consider non-traditional infrastructure in the bill. 

"We would like bipartisanship, but I don't think we have a seriousness on the part of the Republican leadership to address the major crisis facing this country," Senator Bernie Sanders said. "If they're not coming forward, we've got to go forward alone." 

Which Democrats and Republicans are supporting a fourth stimulus check?

CORONAVIRUS STIMULUS CHECKS

Which Democrats and Republicans are supporting a fourth stimulus check?

The White House is reportedly considering recurring stimulus checks, but has remained tight-lipped on the prospect of a fourth stimulus. 

Many across the country are eager to see more direct payments in the near future. In Congress, a number of prominent Democrats have called on Biden to include the direct payments in the next relief bill.

Full details

Turning a $1,200 stimulus check into a million-dollar business 

Twenty-eight-year-old Ellie Diop invested her stimulus check to set up her own online coaching business Ellie Talks Money to help millennials who wanted to start their own businesses in the midst of a pandemic. Diop didn’t have enough resources to cover start-up costs but with a little over $300 she bought a website domain. 10 months after she launched her business, it has generated over $1million in revenue. 

Increase in entrepreneurship related to stimulus aid 

Each of the three successive Economic Impact Payment packages has seen a surge in small business start-ups, the New York Times reports. That trend was especially felt in black neighborhoods possibly starting a new era of entrepreneurship. 

Citing data from a study conducted by the Startup Cartography Project, looking at data from eight US states, the study provides new insight into the changing nature and geography of entrepreneurship in the wake of the covid-19 pandemic. 

How much money have IRS sent in stimulus check since 2020?

CORONAVIRUS STIMULUS CHECKS

How much money have IRS sent in stimulus check since 2020?

Since the onset of the pandemic and the economic crisis three rounds of stimulus checks have been approved, but not all the money slated has gone out.

Every eligible adult over the past year could have received $3,200 in stimulus money and every eligible child $2,500 in the three rounds of stimulus checks. Not everyone who is eligible though has received the stimulus money that was budgeted for them.

Find out how much is still waiting to be disbursed

Tax Deadline 2021: what happens if you file taxes late?

2021 TAX SEASON

Tax Deadline 2021: what happens if you file taxes late?

Filing your tax return late if you owe money to the IRS can be an expensive proposition. Not only could you face penalties for filing late but you will also face late payment penalties and interest to boot.

What to expect if you owe the IRS and file late

Forgot to file a tax return? You can still file to get a tax refund or to avoid penalties

The Internal Revenue Service reminds taxpayers who missed the recent tax-filing deadline who are due a refund that there is no penalty for filing late. The only way to get a refund is to file a tax return.

Those who owe and missed the deadline without requesting an extension should file quickly to limit penalties and interest.

An extension to file is not an extension to pay. Penalties and interest will apply to taxes owed after May 17.

Even if a taxpayer can't afford to immediately pay the taxes they owe, they should still file a tax return as soon as possible to reduce possible penalties.

Child Tax Credit: can you opt-out of the child tax credit?

US News

Child Tax Credit: can you opt-out of the child tax credit?

According to the White House around thirty-nine million families are able to receive benefits associated with the enhanced child tax credit passed through the American Rescue Plan.

Families are slated to begin receiving payments for the child tax credit in July, but some are wondering if they should delay their payments.

Child Tax Credit 2021: what is the maximum age of the children to request the payment?

CHILD TAX CREDIT

Child Tax Credit 2021: what is the maximum age of the children to request the payment?

The American Rescue Plan passed in March will be sending more help to families with children in 2021 through an enhanced Child Tax Credit with optional monthly payments set to begin 15 July.

Depending on the age of your child or dependent at the end of the year will decide how much you can claim on the enhanced Child Tax Credit in 2021.

Find out how much you could expect

Tax Filing 2021: when to expect a tax return after tax filing deadline?

2021 TAX SEASON

Tax Filing 2021: when to expect a tax return after tax filing deadline?

Tax Day has come and gone. If you filed your tax return on time and overpaid the government, you’ll be wondering when you can expect your refund.

The IRS says that it usually sends out a refund within 21 days of receiving an online tax return, but this year the agency warns that it is taking longer due. 

Full details

$50 stimulus to pay internet bill: how to claim it

US NEWS

$50 stimulus to pay internet bill: how to claim it

Registration is now open to claim a monthly $50 coupon towards your internet bill along with other aid as part of the Emergency Broadband Benefit.

Find out how to benefit from the program

Fourth stimulus checks: what do Republicans think of a new relief bill?

CORONAVIRUS STIMULUS CHECKS

Fourth stimulus checks: what do Republicans think of a new relief bill?

President Biden is searching for a bipartisan solution to stimulus talks, but he may have to resort to reconciliation again if he is to pass a large-scale relief bill.

Full details

Cutting unemployment benefits from stimulus package will hurt those who need it most

Republican governors’ newest form of economic stimulus is anti-stimulus: cutting off $300 in additional weekly unemployment insurance money to push people back into the labor market. 

There are a few problems with this approach. First, there’s no compelling evidence that unemployment insurance is responsible for the isolated labor shortages in some low-wage industries like food service. Second, governors are hurting their own economies by turning down billions of dollars in free federal funds. Third, it makes no sense to cut off money to everyone in every industry just because some restaurants are struggling to attract people with low wages.

Read the full story at Mother Jones

Americans living abroad can still claim stimulus checks 

Americans living abroad have been eligible to receive stimulus checks as long as they met eligibility criteria. But reasons as to why they haven’t received the checks vary. 

One of the main reasons is that they aren’t aware that they need to file a tax return, and haven’t for years. The Internal Revenue Service has a streamlined filing compliance procedure to get up to date with Uncle Sam and receive any stimulus money they have coming their way.  They have until 15 June to report to the IRS or file for an extension. 

Find out more

How much were the first, second and third stimulus checks and when were they sent out?

STIMULUS CHECKS

How much were the first, second and third stimulus checks and when were they sent out?

There have been three federal stimulus checks in the United States since the coronavirus pandemic began.

We take a look at each of them

Where is my California Golden State Stimulus? How to check when it will arrive

California Golden State Stimulus

Where is my California Golden State Stimulus? How to check when it will arrive

If you're eligible for one of the $600/$1,200 Golden State Stimulus payments included in the $9.6bn coronavirus aid package passed in California earlier this year, when you get your check depends on when you filed your 2020 state tax return.

Find out more about when the Golden State Stimulus payments are arriving

Inflation on the rise

Inflation surged during April as the US economy rebounded thanks in part to the latest round of stimulus payments. Consumer prices were up 4.2% over 12 months, not seasonally adjusted; and up from 2.6% in March -  the largest 12-month increase since a 4.9-percent rise for the same period ending September 2008.

The US Labor Department report added that the index for used cars and trucks rose 10% in April. This was the biggest one-month increase since the series began in 1953, and it accounted for over a third of the seasonally adjusted all items increase. The food index increased in April, rising 0.4% as the indexes for food at home and food away from home both increased. The energy index decreased slightly, as a decline in the index for gasoline in April more than offset increases in the indexes for electricity and natural gas.

Domestic violence victims who haven't received stimulus checks

Business Insider has highlighted a problem suffered by many victims of domestic abuse in the United States who have yet to receive their stimulus payment. Some stimulus checks and tax returns have gone straight to the people who were abusing them, if they continued to file their tax returns jointly, even after separating.

One 28-year-old survivor says she hasn't received received any of the three stimulus checks which have been sent out by the federal government since the start of the pandemic last year. Her abuser filed his tax return jointly without her consent and collected all of the checks, she told Business Insider.

Read the full story here:

US minimum wage increases compared to Wall Street bonuses

Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal compared the pay rises which Wall Street traders have enjoyed over the past decade to how the US minimum wage has remained static at $7.25 per hour since the last increase on 24 July 2009.

If, during the past 12 years, the minimum wage had increased at the same rate as the bonuses which Wall Street traders receive have risen, it would have quadrupled to $33 per hour Rep. Jayapal noted on Twitter.

Increase in small business start-ups in Black neighborhoods related to stimulus aid

The effects of President Biden's American Rescue Plan are being seen in ethnic communities where the number of new businesses has grown with each of the three successive Economic Impact Payment packages, the New York Times reports, citing data from a study conducted by the Startup Cartography Project.

Leveraging data from eight US states, the study provides new insight into the changing nature and geography of entrepreneurship in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic. Consistent with other data sources, following an initial decline, the overall level of state-level business registrations not only rebounds but increases across all eight states.

Areas including a higher proportion of Black residents, and more specifically higher median income Black neighborhoods, are associated with higher growth in startup formation rates between 2019 and 2020. Moreover, these dynamics are reflected in the passage of the major Federal relief packages.

Even though legislation such as the CARES Act did not directly support new business formation, the passage and implementation of relief packages was followed by a relative increase in start-up formation rates, particularly in neighborhoods with higher median incomes and a higher proportion of Black residents.

How those without permanent addresses can get stimulus checks, Child Tax Credit

The IRS is endeavouring to help those who are homelessness by reminding people who don't have a permanent address or a bank account that they may still qualify for stimulus payments and other credits, including the advance Child Tax Credit.

The IRS is also asking for help from groups that assist vulnerable or undeserved people who may have difficulty getting a stimulus payment automatically. Filing a 2020 tax return, even if people don't have to, could put money in their pocket. The IRS can't issue a payment to eligible Americans when information about them isn't available in the tax agency's systems.

To help those experiencing homelessness, the rural poor and other historically undeserved groups, the IRS urges community groups, employers and others to share information about Economic Impact Payments, the upcoming advance Child Tax Credit and other tax details to help more eligible people file a tax return so they can receive everything to which they're eligible.

 

Stimulus check

How many stimulus checks remain unspent?

The total number of stimulus checks from the first round of aid under the CARES Act which were either refused, paid back or not cashed stands at 1,245,339, according to Internal Revenue Service (IRS) data. Breaking down that figure, California is the state where the most stimulus checks have not been spent with 123,265. The Golden state is followed by Florida (92,018), Texas (88,345), New York (72,988) and Pennsylvania (72,252).

manufacturing

US manufacturing activity powers ahead in early May

PMI points to ‘spectacular acceleration of growth’ in May with IHS Markit adding: “With businesses optimistic about the outlook, backlogs of orders rising sharply and demand continuing to pick up both at home and in export markets, the scene is set for strong economic growth to persist through the summer,” said Chris Williamson, chief business economist at IHS Markit.

Fourth stimulus check: what have Democrats said about a new relief bill?

US News

Fourth stimulus check: what have Democrats said about a new relief bill?

Fourth stimulus check: what have Democrats said about a new relief bill?

Democrats are pushing for the passage of two bills that would provide billions in stimulus for struggling families and to improve the nations infrastructure.

 

bitcoin

Bitcoin fights back after sell-off

Cryptocurrencies fought back on Monday, clawing back ground after a bout of weekend selling fuelled by further signs of a gathering Chinese crackdown on the emerging sector.

Bitcoin climbed as high as $37,391 after falling some 7.5% a day earlier, and was last up 5%. Second-largest cryptocurrency ether jumped more than10% to as high as $2,321, erasing losses of 8.6% on Sunday that pushed it to near a two-month low around $1,730.

The catalyst for the slump was cryptocurrency "miners", who mint cryptocurrencies by using powerful computers to solve complex maths puzzles, halting Chinese operations in the face of increasing scrutiny from authorities.

Explaining the mystery of the inflation rate in US and Eurozone

From 2004 to March 2021, core inflation in the US and the eurozone has fluctuated between zero and 2.5% – despite the financial crisis and global pandemic

El Pais (English) explain why

Check status of IRS refund via official app

The official IRS 2Go app can be downloaded via the Google Play store for Android devices and from the Apple Store for IoS based products.

 

tax

How long do I have to my keep tax returns?

You’ve filed your taxes and now you’re wondering what to do with those papers, depending on what you need them for determines how long you should keep them.

The minimum time that you will need to hold on to your tax return and supporting documents is three years from the time that you filed them with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) or the due date, whichever was later. You will want to keep your tax return form with your supporting forms; W-2s, 1099 or other, and documents; records for itemized deductions, child care expenses and any other documents that you used to report your tax liability.

Stimulus mortgage program: how to apply to pause mortgage payments

COVID-19 FINANCIAL RELIEF

Stimulus mortgage program: how to apply to pause mortgage payments

Stimulus mortgage program: how to apply to pause mortgage payments

The Biden administration has extended the mortgage forbearance programme introduced last year, giving you until July to claim the covid-19 financial relief.

Can an employer ask if you're vaccinated in the US?

Coronavirus

Can an employer ask if you're vaccinated in the US?

Can an employer ask if you're vaccinated in the US?

New CDC guidance on mask-wearing for vaccinated people leaves employers in an awkward position in trying to figure out how to establish office safety.

President Biden urged by House Ways and Means members to pass recurring payments

A letter penned by seven Democratic members of the House Ways and Means Committee to Biden on May 17 urged the president to back a plan that would issue recurring federal direct payments.

Full story via Mass Live

How much will children receive from the Child Tax Credit this summer?

US News

How much will children receive from the Child Tax Credit this summer?

How much will children receive from the Child Tax Credit this summer?

Payments for the enhanced Child Tax Credit are set to begin in July, but how much should families expect to receive in the coming months?

SC

Is there a fourth stimulus check coming in June?

While the prospect of an imminent fourth stimulus check now seems unlikely, there are talks ongoing about an inclusion that could see another round triggered in future.

Newsweek report that the Economic Security Project has briefed 50 members of staff from the Senate Finance Committee on “automatic stabilizers;” which would provide a framework for more checks without needing additional approval from Congress.

Sales Tax Holiday in Florida: When are they taking place and what items are included?

US News

Sales Tax Holiday in Florida: When are they taking place and what items are included?

Florida passes bill that includes three sales tax holidays

Various states have announced sales-tax-free periods to encourage spending. Florida residents will begin their first sales tax-free period on 28 May.

US Senate Republicans sees short window for infrastructure deal

US Senate Republicans and the White House could have as little as a week to 10 days to overcome their differences on infrastructure and strike a deal to revitalize America's roads and bridges, a top Republican said on Sunday.

Senator Roy Blunt, who is among a group of Republicans negotiating with the Biden administration, said the two sides are still far apart on how to define infrastructure, which President Joe Biden views as a wide-ranging topic that includes climate change and social issues such as elder care, as well as roads and bridges.

Vaccine

As per US economy boost, vaccine rollout a big shot in the arm to UK growth outlook

Britain's economy will grow much faster than expected this year as a fast-moving coronavirus vaccine programme allows businesses to re-open and lifts confidence.

As we saw with the United States after the successful vaccine roll-out, the British economy will grow much faster than expected this year as a fast-moving coronavirus vaccine programme allows businesses to re-open and lifts confidence, a Reuters poll found.

The country has suffered the highest covid related death toll in Europe, despite stringent lockdowns to try to contain its spread. But it has administered around 58 million coronavirus vaccine doses, including about 21 million citizens having had second shots.

The UK economy will expand 5.9% this year, much stronger than the 5.0% forecast last month, according to the median forecast in the May 18-20 poll of over 60 economists. It is forecast to grow 5.3% in 2022.

dollar

Dollar stuck near 3-month low

The dollar was pinned near three-month lows against a basket of major currencies on Monday, as bets on a robust global economic recovery continued to support currencies seen as riskier.

The dollar index hovered around the 90 mark, broadly flat on the day and close to a three-month low of 89.646 hit on Friday.

The greenback, seen as a safe haven trade, has steadily retreated over the past two months as optimism has built about the global economic outlook. Stock markets across Europe opened up on Monday, closing in on record highs.

Currency analysts were already looking ahead to key U.S. personal consumption and inflation figures due Friday for any warning signs that U.S. inflation could be gathering pace and putting pressure on the Federal Reserve to taper policy.

Traders are also watching for progress on a new stimulus package in the United States, after the White House pared down its infrastructure bill to $1.7 trillion on Friday but failed to gain Senate Republican backing.

Unemployment benefits: What changes are coming in June? 

US News

Unemployment benefits: What changes are coming in June? 

Unemployment benefits: What changes are coming in June? 

Changes to unemployment benefits across the US could impact millions of beneficiaries as some states choose to end additional benefits or implement new requirements.

$3000/$3600 Child Tax Credit: how and when will the payments be sent?

US News

$3000/$3600 Child Tax Credit: how and when will the payments be sent?

$3000/$3600 Child Tax Credit: how and when will the payments be sent?

Payments for the Child Tax Credit are to begin 15 July and will go out to over ninety percent of families in the United States. 

Unemployment benefits: will the $300 weekly payments continue?

US NEWS

Unemployment benefits: will the $300 weekly payments continue?

Unemployment benefits: will the $300 weekly payments continue?

While the American Rescue Plan extends federal pandemic unemployment benefits until September, 22 states have now chosen to end them earlier.

US stimulus checks live updates: welcome

Welcome to our live US stimulus checks blog for Monday 24 May. We’ll be bringing you updates on a possible fourth direct payment and updates on the third stimulus check, which the IRS has been distributing since the $1.9tn American Rescue Plan was signed into law in early March.

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