2008 Economic Stimulus Package
Well, it is almost official. The nation is only waiting for President Bush to sign it and we will soon receive our money. The 2008 economic stimulus package is an attempt to prevent the United States from sliding into a recession, or from sliding further into a recession - it depends on who you talk to. It will cost the government $167 billion, but what will it do for you?
For singles it will mean between $300 and $600 in your pocket - as long as you earned at least $3000, but not more than $75,000 last year. For married couples earning under $150,000 you will receive $1200. For each dependent you have you will earn another $300. The Senate was able to add onto the bill so that people who receive Social Security and veterans and their widows will receive $300. Originally these groups were to receive nothing.
So what should you do with your windfall? We all have plenty of time to decide how best to use this money, since it won't be arriving in our mailboxes for another 3-6 months. If you are smart you will pay down your debt or save it for an emergency. Of course the whole point of the program is to stimulate the economy, so the government would like you to spend this money.
I am all for stimulating the economy, however I think that each person needs to do what is best for them, and for most people spending this money on wants is not the best thing for them. Many people will use this money to purchase necessities, which is great. I truly hope this money helps people make ends meet, if only for one month. This would help the people and the economy at the same time.
My concern is this. So many of the products America sells are made in China or other foreign countries. If we run out and spend this money without looking at where things are made, most of this money that is meant to stimulate the United States economy will go right back to China.
So before you spend your windfall (and please don't spend it yet, there will be many months between now and when you actually receive this money) decide what is best for you and your family and make some smart moves with this money. Use it to help you first and the economy second. And make sure it is the American economy you are helping.