Survey: 84 percent of Americans polled want another wave of stimulus checks

Eighty-four percent of respondents polled in a WalletHub Coronavirus Relief Survey said they want another stimulus check from the federal government.

Individual checks of $1,200 and $2,400 for families administered through the $2 trillion CARES Act are not enough to weather the financial storm caused by the economic shutdown in response the virus, they argue.

Despite getting the largest stimulus check ever given by the federal government, many in the survey are questioning whether the government has done enough to help the 26 million people unemployed the past five weeks.

They also said the most effective way to help people impacted by the virus is to send stimulus checks (65 percent), not cancel mortgage or rent payments (35 percent).

The majority said everyone should get a stimulus check (or additional checks), roughly 62 percent, whereas 14 percent said only those who were laid off or furloughed should receive it. The numbers dwindle when considering who should receive a stimulus check according to the percentage of income individuals have lost due to the economic shutdown.

Millennials are 25 percent more likely than baby boomers to think that stimulus checks should only be given to people experiencing income loss. And 70 percent said the federal government should only provide financial assistance to businesses that have suffered loss of revenue.

Fifty percent of respondents said small businesses need coronavirus relief money more than consumers and big businesses do.

The majority of respondents said they intend to spend the stimulus check on mortgage or rent payments (43 percent), followed by 26 percent each who said they planned to save it or spend it on food. Roughly 4 percent said they plan to spend it on non-essentials like entertainment. Among this entire group however, 67 percent said they plan to donate part of their stimulus check to charity.

When it comes to unemployment benefits, 56 percent of respondents said benefits should match the amount of wages a worker earned prior to losing his or her job, not exceed it. Only 43 percent of respondents ages 18 to 29 said unemployment benefits should never exceed former income, while 60 percent of people aged 59 and older said it should.

According to the survey, many Americans risk going broke. Nearly 160 million Americans are less than three months away from running out of money, WalletHub reports.

Thirty-five percent said they have enough money to last one to three months; 29 percent said they have enough to last less than a month; 22 percent more than six months; and 14 percent between four and six months.

“The situation is even more dire for certain populations – 75 percent of low-income households are less than three months away from running out of money, compared to 50 percent of high-income households,” Gonzalez adds.

The report was based on results from a nationally representative online survey of more than 350 respondents. After collecting the responses, WalletHub normalized the data by age, gender and income to most reflect U.S. demographics.

This article was first published by The Center Square.



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