Beyond the Health Crisis: Employment Snapshot Special Report
Initial Unemployment Claims Down From Peak Yet Stubbornly High; Expiration of Federal Benefits Could Reveal True Damage
Federal unemployment benefits underpin many household budgets. The generous $600 per week in federal unemployment benefits has not only mitigated the damage of rapid job loss, but has increased total compensation. Many lower-wage workers have been making more on unemployment than they were previously at their jobs. However, the expiration of these benefits and likely reduction in a potential future stimulus bill will test the economy. Consumer spending could drop significantly and more households may find it difficult to meet financial obligations.