The country’s collective credit card debt fell by the largest amount in more than two decades last year- thanks largely to the government’s fiscal stimulus aid.
Matt Schulz, LendingTree’s chief analyst, told Yahoo Money, “It’s definitely not a normal thing for unemployed folks in economic crisis to be able to pay down their credit card bill.”
According to a new report from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, credit card balances ended 2020 $108 billion lower versus 2019.
The decline comes after the government last year sent 160 million Americans stimulus checks worth up to $1,200 per individual and $500 for child dependents.
The extra boost from the government plus hardship programs helped prevent Americans from defaulting on their credit card obligations.
Up next, Sacramento, California has approved $31.7 million in both state and federal funding in rental assistance for low-income residents.
According to city officials, $15.2 million comes from the federal stimulus package, and $16.4 million is from California’s bill.
The bill also extended the state’s eviction moratorium to June 30th.
Officials say priority will be given to households who earn 50% or less of the area median income, those who have been unemployed for the last 90 days, and those who owe rent.
Danielle Foster, the City’s housing policy manager stated, “This additional funding will help those in our communities who need it most. We’re excited to partner with SHRA and our community-based organizations to get these new funds out into the community quickly.”
And finally, a key House committee on Friday released the Democrats’ massive relief package into a 591-page bill.
The House bill would extend two key unemployment programs through August 29th and increase the federal weekly boost to $400.
It would lengthen the duration of the PUA program to up to 74 weeks, from the 50 weeks, and the PEUC program to 48 weeks, from the 24 weeks.
The legislation would also send $19.1 billion to state and local governments to help low-income households cover back rent or utility bills.
The bill also expands the child tax credit to $3,600 for children under 6 and $3,000 for children under age 18.