Consumer spending rose 1.9% last month — but the rebound slowed from May and June. Unemployment benefits continued to prop up spending in July, but that may change in August.
Initial unemployment claims had been above 1 million for 20 straight weeks. The total receiving unemployment also dipped, to 28.3 million, as of July 25.
As Congress debates whether to renew supplemental unemployment benefits for people thrown out of work by the pandemic, new research shows those benefits offer a critical boost for the U.S. economy.
The $600 weekly pandemic unemployment payments have single-handedly changed the economic equation in America as people earn more staying home than they did in the jobs they lost.