H.R. 6419, the Emergency Unemployment Compensation Continuation Act

 Status: Introduced in House

Key Facts:

  • H.R. 6419 would extend Federal UI programs through February 28, 2011, preventing two million unemployed workers from losing their benefits by the end of the year and over another two million by February.
  •  Consistent with past Democratic and Republican Congresses, the bill is considered emergency spending and is estimated to cost $12.5 billion.
  • The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) found that because UI benefits increase consumer demand and spending, while preventing people from falling out of the labor market, “the extensions of unemployment insurance benefits in the past few years increased both employment and participation in the labor force over what they would otherwise have been in 2009.”
  •  A September Census Bureau report found that UI benefits prevented 3.3 million Americans from falling into poverty.
  •  This week the Wall Street Journal quoted an estimate suggesting that allowing the extensions to expire would cut economic growth by half a percentage point.

Click here for the legislative text of the Emergency Unemployment Compensation Continuation Act.

Click here for a State-by-State chart on the estimated number of claimants losing benefits through January 1, 2011, if Congress fails to act.

Click here for the CBO table.