Economists : variable Delta may be a reason to extend unemployment benefits

Economists say variable delta may be a reason to extend unemployment benefits

Federal unemployment benefits are set to expire on September 6. Some economists believe Congress should consider extending this date due to the covid delta variable.

The virus strain is more contagious and has caused many new cases, mainly among the unvaccinated.

According to economists, a renewed outbreak could lead to reduced economic activity when many do not have access to the unemployment system.

 According to some labor economists, the rapidly spreading delta variant of Covid-19 is a reason for extending federal unemployment benefits after it is expired. This is, of course, a hypothetical scenario. There was little indication of the political will to continue the benefits after they passed on September 6.

And nearly half of the states, most of which are Republicans, pulled out of federal unemployment programs months ago, claiming benefits prevent recipients from returning to work.

Delta variable

According to CDC, there is seven-day average for newly confirmed cases jumped to more than 26,000 as of July 14, double the amount two weeks ago.

The CDC estimates that 58% of recent US cases were due to the delta variant, which is more contagious than other strains. According to the CDC, in some areas, such as Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, and Nebraska, the variant accounts for nearly 90% of new cases.

The White House's chief medical adviser, Dr. Anthony Fauci, said in June that the delta variant "currently represents the greatest threat in the United States to our attempt to eradicate Covid-19."

"I think most of our economic policy has been based on the status quo of the epidemic," Dube said. "The economics of the pandemic is not necessarily over."

unemployment benefits

The growing number of cases was why Congress initially created pandemic-era benefit programs in March 2020 through the CARES Act.

The unemployment system has significantly expanded, assisting those who have exhausted state benefits and those who do not usually qualify for state assistance, such as self-employed workers, temporary job workers, and parents who have had to take care of their children at home.

However, economists are quick to point out that the current situation is different. Last year, Covid vaccines were not available; Now, nearly 60% of American adults are fully vaccinated. So far, the delta variant appears to be highly prevalent among non-immunized individuals.

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