Stalled stimulus talks, millions of Americans in poverty, more wealth for billionaires: Economy during COVID

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More than 8 million Americans have fallen into poverty since May, according to a report from Columbia University. Photo by Pixabay

Lawmakers have been going back and forth for weeks about another stimulus package to help ease the economic crisis caused by COVID-19. At this point, it’s anyone’s guess what Americans will see and when. 

U.S. Department of Labor numbers show that nearly 900,000 people filed for unemployment during the week ending on October 10. Columbia University reports that more than 8 million Americans have fallen into poverty since May. Many of the temporary job losses from spring have become permanent. Hundreds of thousands of small businesses have shut down. 

But Wall Street is booming. Walmart, Domino's Pizza and Amazon are thriving. In fact, billionaires like Jeff Bezos have increased their wealth by 27% during the pandemic, according to Swiss bank UBS. 

Credits

Guests:
Erica Werner - Congressional reporter for the Washington Post who covers economic policy - @ericawerner, Ian Shepherdson - chief U.S. economist for Pantheon Macroeconomics, which advises Wall Street firms and hedge funds, Dion Rabouin - markets editor for Axios

Host:
Madeleine Brand

Producers:
Sarah Sweeney, Michell Eloy, Amy Ta, Rosalie Atkinson, Brian Hardzinski, Caleigh Wells, Angie Perrin