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Financial Planning > College Planning > Student Loan Debt

Treasury’s Mnuchin Provides CARES Act Update

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The Paycheck Protection Program has processed more than 4.2 million loans for more than $530 billion to keep tens of millions of Americans on payrolls, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin told senators Tuesday. Lawmakers have allocated $669 billion for the program.

“We have issued more than 140 million Economic Impact Payments for over $240 billion to provide direct relief to millions of Americans,” Mnuchin told members of the Senate Banking Committee. “The typical family of four received $3,400.”

Treasury and the Small Business Administration have also distributed nearly $150 billion to states, local and tribal governments through the Coronavirus Relief Fund for essential services, Mnuchin said, and approved nearly $25 billion in payroll support to the airline industry.

Mnuchin and Federal Reserve Board Chairman Jerome Powell testified on the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act. Senators grilled them on why much of the money provided by the law remains unspent.

Powell and Mnuchin’s testimony on implementation of the CARES Act “underscored building bipartisan consensus” around support for state and local governments and adjustments to the PPP “and adds to the position that the Fed is poised to do whatever it can to support the market,” Ed Mills, policy analyst for Raymond James, said in his Wednesday morning email briefing.

“The hearing highlighted that only approximately half of the fiscal relief passed has been fully deployed,” Mills said. “Powell clarified that the Main Street Lending Program and Municipal Lending Facility will be operational by the end of May or early June, which should provide lawmakers with greater insight.”

According to SBA, the average overall loan size for the PPP is $118,000, and during the second round of PPP funding, the average loan size has been around $70,000, Senate Banking Committee Chairman Michael Crapo said.

On April 28, Treasury and SBA announced that the SBA would review all PPP loans in excess of $2 million to make sure borrowers’ self-certification for the loans was appropriate, Crapo stated, but the SBA later said it would not investigate smaller loans.

Treasury released Monday a Paycheck Protection Program Loan Forgiveness application along with instructions on how to apply.

SBA also said that it would soon issue regulations and guidance to further help borrowers apply, as well as to provide lenders with guidance on their responsibilities.

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