Personal Finance in the Age of Coronavirus
Featured Coverage of this Story
From the CenterAmericans use their $1,200 stimulus checks to splurge at Walmart, Target and Best Buy — here’s what they’re buying
While many Americans have used their stimulus checks to cover basic needs such as groceries, mortgage or rent, there’s evidence people are also spending the money on non-essentials including electronics, clothes and toys, according to major retailers.
“Call it relief spending, as it was heavily influenced by stimulus dollars, leading to sales increases in categories such as apparel, televisions, video games, sporting goods and toys,” Walmart WMT, -0.36% CEO Doug McMillon said during the company’s earnings call Tuesday.
Target TGT, -0.79% and Best Buy Co. BBY, -4.36% also saw increased...
From the CenterMillions of Americans Skip Credit-Card and Car Payments
Millions of people are behind on their credit-card and auto-loan payments, the latest sign of the coronavirus pandemic’s financial devastation.
Lenders in April had nearly 15 million credit cards in “financial hardship” programs, such as deferral programs that let borrowers temporarily stop making payments, according to estimates by credit-reporting firm TransUnion. That accounts for about 3% of the credit-card accounts the company tracks, TransUnion said Wednesday.
Nearly three million auto loans were in these hardship programs, accounting for about 3.5% of those tracked.
The numbers have surged from a year...
From the LeftCOVID-19 may make universal basic income more palatable. That’s a good thing
The idea of a universal basic income — a regular stipend paid to every American adult to meet minimum life needs — has been bubbling around the edges of American politics for decades.
With the coming of the coronavirus pandemic, UBI may finally move to center stage, and stay there.
“This is a moment when the UBI idea is possibly going to feel more appealing to a lot of people,” observes Ioana Marinescu, a labor economist at the University of Pennsylvania who has studied what she calls unconditional cash transfer...