US Senate passes US$2.2 trillion Covid-19 stimulus

US Senate passes US$2.2 trillion Covid-19 stimulus

An economic stimulus package now estimated to be worth US$2.2 trillion (AUD$3.7 trillion) has been unanimously passed in the US Senate with 96 votes, and will go to the House where a vote is expected on Friday.

The Washington Post reports the bill includes a $500 billion business lending program, a $367 billion employee retention fund for small businesses, and will also translate to payments of $1,200 to most American adults and $500 for most children.

In response, President Donald Trump, who has indicated he will sign the measure, tweeted "congratulations AMERICA!".

The proposal equates to more than 9 per cent of US annual gross domestic product (GDP). In comparison, Australia's $189 billion stimulus package is worth around 10 per cent of our country's GDP last year.

This proposed stimulus compares to an US$831 billion stimulus package implemented by the Obama Administration in response to the global financial crisis (GFC), more commonly known as the Great Recession in the United States.

The Washington Post reports there have been more than 13,000 new cases of the coronavirus in the United States since Tuesday, while many are expecting Louisiana will become the next epicentre of the virus, in large part due to transmissions that likely occurred during Mardi Gras festivities in New Orleans. 

More to come......

Updated at 4pm AEDT on 26 March 2020.

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