With one day in the month to go, the U.S. Treasury Department has paid out $108.5 billion in unemployment benefits so far in June — the most so far during the coronavirus crisis, according to Bloomberg News.
Payments have risen every month, from $4.2 billion in March to $48.4 billion in April and $93.7 billion in May. Even so, payments are still falling short of the estimated total cost of claims, according to an analysis by Bloomberg, due to an enormous backlog that is still being cleared up by state unemployment offices, some dating back to the beginning of the crisis.
The $600 per week federal boost to unemployment benefits makes up a substantial chunk of the payments, and if Congress allows that temporary enhancement to expire at the end of July, the Treasury’s monthly outlay for could start shrinking. If the benefit is renewed, however, the monthly tally could continue to grow into the fall.