Where is Americans’ Stimulus Money Going?

May 26, 2020

Hopes that the government’s stimulus checks would spur economic activity may be dashed somewhat by a new survey looking at how Americans actually spent their money. The survey, conducted by YouGov, found that the most common use for stimulus money was paying bills. Nearly one-third of the respondents said they used the money for regular monthly expenses like utilities, rent, and insurance.

The next most common uses were putting the money into savings (14%), buying household essentials (10%), and paying down debt (8%). 

The survey paints a picture of a population struggling to get by, and suggests that the money was used mainly trying to keep a roof overhead and food on the table. Just 3% of the respondents said they used the money for non-essential items like electronics, appliances, or entertainment. It seems that, for most Americans, the stimulus check helped stabilize their finances, but may not spur new economic growth.

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