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Second stimulus needed as economy slows down during holiday season: Can Congress get it done?

Last week the final jobs report of 2020 was released; and it was one that many economists would like to forget. It prompted elected leaders at all levels to call for economic relief through a stimulus package.

President-elect Joe Biden called the report ‘grim’ and renewed his ask for Congress to get a stimulus deal done.

He told reporters in Deleware that a single package wouldn’t be enough.

“The fight against COVID won’t be won in January,” Biden said. He previously called the bill that was introduced by the Problem Solvers Caucus, and picked up steam on both sides of the political aisle later on a ‘down payment’.

Republicans and Democrats have said that a deal needs to be put together before Christmas.

“The country is going to be in dire, dire, dire straits,” Biden added, speaking to the need of a package that addresses unemployment benefits that are set to run out, as well as a number of other reliefs for small businesses, schools, hospitals, and more.

The nation is battling through the second wave of a pandemic that is likely to continue growing during the holiday season. Governor Andrew Cuomo, of New York, said that he expects cases to peak in early-January, before there is any kind of leveling of case increases.

The U.S. economy added just 245,000 jobs in November. The unemployment rate fell to 6.7%. The expectation was that the economy would gain over 440,000 jobs in that period. However, it didn’t happen.

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