Stimulus Checks

By Raymond Gao

It’s been many months since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, and much has changed since then. Vaccines are out, remote meetings are still common, masks are now the usual, and although it has been long since it started, stimulus checks of some level are still going out. The average American household has already received a few thousand dollars, the federal government has sent many billions out in order to try support families and restore the economy. When the first bill went out early in 2020, and soon dried out, a second and third round of payments came out. On a per person basis, the money supplied by these measures does not appear to be that much. Only a few thousand dollars at best while most jobs pay several times that a year. However, to the lowest level income earners, these payments, when calculated, account for a very large proportion of the money available to them. Into 2021 and possibly further into the future, these payments have still not fully stopped. Currently, many families are able to receive $250 or $300 a month for the time being, and possible for a lot longer.  The future of this flow of money is debated. There are many that have received great benefit, and there are clearly those who feel it might have been too much money. Should these extra payments become a long term legacy of the pandemic years, what would the money do to the economy eventually, and where is the federal government paying it from? Currently, while early checks received by families very much went to the purchase of various things, it seems more recent money now has potential to be invested into longer term gains. Extra money towards people with low income is a good idea, if it reduces still existing poverty and promotes equality.