Published: Wed, March 25, 2020
Markets | By Otis Pena

$2T Coronavirus Stimulus To Pass Senate As Lawmakers, White House Reach Agreement

$2T Coronavirus Stimulus To Pass Senate As Lawmakers, White House Reach Agreement

The White House and Senate leaders have finally agreed to a sweeping $2 trillion stimulus package for the US economy as the country grapples with the fallout from the coronavirus pandemic.

This package will hopefully serve to remind Donald Trump that he will not be able to enrich himself off the crisis he had a hand in causing, and will also show that it was Congress, not the President, that acted to actually help people in the time of need.

The coronavirus crisis stands to do damage to the USA economy and job market with the potential to send the US unemployment rate much higher; Fox Business correspondent Susan Li reports.

Schumer's main rival in the Senate, Republican Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, was also optimistic about the deal, hailing it as "a bipartisan agreement".

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi had consulted with Schumer throughout his negotiations with Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin.

It reportedly includes payments of $1,200 to most American adults and aid to help small businesses pay workers.

In addition, there are numerous other tranches of money for small business loans ($300 billion), local and state governments ($150 billion), and hospitals ($130 billion).

The Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, a bipartisan think tank based in Washington that normally campaigns for reduced deficits, said late Tuesday that the deficit would "easily exceed $2 trillion this year and next".

Spain registers more than 700 deaths from coronavirus
The elderly are among the most vulnerable to the coronavirus, and Spain's nursing home system has been hit particularly hard. The Madrid metropolitan area, where the outbreak initially started in Spain , has the most cases of any Spanish region.

It is unclear how the government would deliver the payments, or how quickly they could be distributed.

- That fund will include a number of transparency and oversight measures, including public disclosure of where the loan money goes, an inspector general to oversee the program, and a provision that high-level government officials can not benefit.

According to CNN, individuals who earn $75,000 or less would get direct payments of $1,200 each, with married couples earning up to $150,000 receiving $2,400 and an additional $500 per each child. It could also lead to potential changes to the legislation that would have to be reconciled with the Senate.

The legislation creates a $367 billion federally-guaranteed loan program for small businesses who must pledge not to lay off their workers.

The deal still needs to be approved by the Senate and House of Representatives, but the stock market rose on Tuesday as reports came out that an agreement was imminent, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average gaining more than 2,100 points, or 11.4%.

He promised that the Senate will approve the legislation later on Wednesday. Under the terms of the deal reached on Wednesday, an independent inspector general and a congressional oversight board will be in charge of scrutinizing the lending provided to big businesses ― similar to what was done for the 2008 Wall Street bailout a decade ago.

GOP Senator Pat Toomey told reporters the plan will provide US$100 billion directly to hospitals and health care providers, US$250 million in hospital grants, and large investment for vaccines and test kits.

White House aide Eric Ueland announced the agreement in a Capitol hallway Wednesday, shortly after midnight, capping days of often intense haggling and mounting pressure. The World Health Organization said the USA has the potential to become the new epicenter of the global pandemic as the number of known infections soars. "It's time for Washington to start acting that way, and send this bill to the president".

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