Stimulus checks could hit some bank accounts as soon as this weekend, White House says

The next batch of stimulus checks will be deposited into some bank accounts this weekend, the White House said Thursday.

“People can expect to start seeing direct deposits hit their bank accounts as early as this weekend,” White House press secretary Jen Psaki said at a news briefing after President Joe Biden signed the American Rescue Plan into law on Thursday afternoon.

Psaki said that the checks are “the first wave” and they will continue to flow over “the next several weeks.”

The majority of recipients will get a direct payment of up to $1,400. Married couples who make under $150,000 will receive $2,800. Higher earners will see payments phase out and then cut off above certain incomes. Parents who meet income eligibility requirements will get $1,400 per dependent.

Some families who meet income requirements with two parents and two kids could see a payment for $5,600 in their bank account by Sunday.

The first to receive their economic impact payment will be people who have direct deposit information on file with the IRS, typically done when taxes are filed.

“I believe this is, and most people do as well, historic legislation that is about rebuilding the backbone of this country, giving people who built this country a fighting chance,” Biden said moments before signing the bill.

Some families who meet income requirements with two parents and two kids could see a payment for $5,600 in their bank account by Sunday.

Increased vaccine supply, number of vaccinations, and falling infection rates have brightened economic hopes across the country. Governors have rolled back some, or all, lockdown restrictions, increasing optimism for large and small businesses. Consumer spending has increased as the newly vaccinated tap pent-up demand and saved-up cash to celebrate, a trend that will only accelerate.

That has raised the prospect of inflationary fears, but Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell has shot down any idea that the injection of stimulus spending into the economy could lead to sustained inflation. However, he has not ruled out a brief uptick in consumer prices.

Financial devastation has consumed the lives of Americans most exposed to pandemic business downturns, such as those in restaurants, travel, entertainment, and retail industries.

Last week was the 51st straight week that first-time jobless claims were higher than the worst week of the Great Recession.

Total people filing for unemployment benefits is still about 18 million more than a year ago today, at the pandemic’s outset.

Though the unemployment rate is officially just 6.2 percent, Powell and Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen have both said the real figure is closer to 10 percent, when accounting for misclassification errors.

Ben Popken

Ben Popken is a senior business reporter for NBC News.

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