In economic news, the U.S. lost 140,000 jobs in December. Jobs held by women, mostly Latina and Black women, account for the net loss, with restaurant and bar workers suffering the highest numbers.
This comes as The Guardian reports nearly every state has failed to meet federal requirements to distribute enhanced unemployment benefits within three weeks to most recipients. Benefits for some 14 million people expired on or before December 26 — a day before President Trump signed the latest stimulus bill into law, leading to lapses.
Joe Biden is unveiling his proposal this week to provide trillions of dollars in pandemic relief funds, which includes plans to increase direct relief to $2,000 per person. Biden spoke Friday as he formally introduced the newest members of his economic team.
President-elect Joe Biden: “We need more direct relief flowing to families, small businesses, including finishing the job of getting people the $2,000 in relief, direct payment. Six hundred is simply not enough when you have to choose between paying rent, putting food on the table, keeping the lights on.”