Mnuchin: Coronavirus direct deposits payments coming 'within two weeks'

'I told you this would be three weeks, I'm now committing to two weeks,' Treasury Secretary Mnuchin said.

Last Updated:
May 26, 2020 - 3:59pm

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Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said Thursday that U.S. households will receive their coronavirus relief checks via bank direct deposits "within two weeks" after the IRS verifies their eligibility for the money – made available under the $2.2 trillion coronavirus stimulus package.   

"I told you this would be three weeks, I'm now committing to two weeks," Mnuchin said during the daily White House coronavirus task force briefing. "We're delivering on our commitments. The IRS, which I oversee, within two weeks, the first money will be in people's accounts."

Mnuchin also said the Trump administration hopes to move faster in dispersing the stimulus money than the Obama White House did in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis.

"When Obama sent out these checks, it took months and months and months," Mnuchin said. "I am assuring the American public. They need the money now. What we're going to do is get it." 

Concerns about the economy widened earlier in the day when the Labor Department reported more than 6 million first-time jobless claims for the week ending March 28.

"If we don't have your information, you'll have a simple web portal, you'll upload it," Mnuchin told Americans perhaps concerned about the administration not having enough information to get them their money. "If we don't have that, we'll send you checks in the mail."

Mnuchin said his preference is for people not to get printed checks during the coronavirus pandemic. 

The Treasury secretary also addressed concerns about the website and other resources from the Small Business Administration, which is overseeing part of the stimulus plan, called the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. CARES establishes a new, $349 billion Paycheck Protection Program to give loans, some of which are forgivable, to keep businesses afloat and avoid layoffs during the huge economic downturn as a result of the pandemic.

“Let me be just clear, that doesn’t mean everybody is going to get their loan tomorrow,” Mnuchin said. “But the system will be up and running. We encourage people over the next week, sign up, right now you can go on the Web.”

Mnuchin said the CARES Act was designed to give 10 weeks of financial liquidity.

“If we run out of money on the small business program, we’ll be back right away to Congress to get this increased,” he said.

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