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On The Money: McConnell sets first vote on coronavirus stimulus for Sunday | Five sticking points to a deal | Four senators sold stocks before coronavirus crashed markets | 'Tax Day' delayed until July 15

Happy Friday and welcome back to On The Money, where we hope you and yours can enjoy a restful and healthy weekend. I’m Sylvan Lane, and here’s your nightly guide to everything affecting your bills, bank account and bottom line.

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THE BIG DEAL–McConnell sets first coronavirus stimulus package vote for Sunday: Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellDemocratic leaders criticize GOP stimulus bill as too pro-business Walmart to give cash, early bonuses to hourly employees amid coronavirus outbreak GOP senators raise concerns over smaller checks for lower earners MORE (R-Ky.) has set up the first vote related to a mammoth stimulus package over the coronavirus for Sunday.

McConnell on Friday teed up a “shell” bill — essentially a place holder for the agreement, if one is reached.

“I just filed cloture on the motion to proceed to a shell that will serve as the vehicle. … Member-level discussion is going on as we speak. The goal is to reach agreements on each of the four components of the legislation by the end of the day,” he said.

  • Under Senate rules, the earliest the first procedural vote could happen is Sunday.
  • The package is expected to cost approximately $1 trillion, though GOP senators didn’t rule out that the number could climb as they negotiate with Democrats.
  • McConnell’s decision to tee up the spending package comes as senators, their staff and top administration officials are still behind closed doors trying to reach an agreement.

The negotiations are focused on four groups: health care, small business, tax and impacted industries like airlines.

Multiple sticking points remain as staffers scramble behind closed doors. Here are five to watch: 



Four senators sold stocks before coronavirus threat crashed market: Four senators sold stocks shortly after a January briefing in the Senate on the novel coronavirus outbreak, unloading shares that plummeted in value a month later as the stock market crashed in the face of a global pandemic.

According to financial disclosure forms, Sens. Kelly LoefflerKelly LoefflerVulnerable Republicans dodge questions on support for ObamaCare lawsuit The Hill’s Campaign Report: Biden riding wave of momentum after stunning Super Tuesday Nikki Haley expected to endorse Loeffler in Senate race MORE (R-Ga.), James InhofeJames (Jim) Mountain InhofeSenate passes House’s coronavirus aid bill, sending it to Trump Overnight Energy: Democratic lawmakers seek emissions reductions in airline bailout | House Dems warn Trump against oil industry bailout | GOP senators ask Saudis to stabilize oil market Lobbying world MORE (R-Okla.), Dianne FeinsteinDianne Emiel FeinsteinThe Hill’s Morning Report – Trump takes unexpected step to stem coronavirus Democrats start hinting Sanders should drop out Democratic senators ask IRS to extend tax filing deadline amid coronavirus outbreak MORE (D-Calif.) and Richard BurrRichard Mauze BurrTucker Carlson calls on Burr to resign amid reports of stock selloff On The Money: McConnell introduces third coronavirus relief proposal | Democrats seek bigger stimulus with less aid for business | Washington scrambles to prevent unemployment spike Burr sold off significant amount of stock a week before market crash started: report MORE (R-N.C.) each sold hundreds of thousands of dollars in stocks within days of the Senate holding a classified briefing on Jan. 24 with Trump administration officials on the threat of the coronavirus outbreak.

The sales raise questions about whether the senators violated the STOCK Act, a law that bans members of Congress from making financial trades based on nonpublic information. I break down the trades here.


Tax experts urge Congress to redesign coronavirus rebate checks: Tax experts are urging lawmakers to make changes to the coronavirus rebate checks being considered by Senate Republicans. 

Economic policy analysts at think tanks have flagged several aspects of the checks proposal that they think are problematic, including the fact that the lowest-income people wouldn’t qualify for the full amount of the checks, and that the check amounts that people would receive in the near-term are based on their 2018 income.

As Republicans and Democrats race to reach a deal, experts hope that improvements will be made to any rebates proposal included in the final package so that it better helps low-income people. The Hill’s Naomi Jagoda explains here.





  • The United Kingdom is moving to help pay up to 80 percent of wages for all U.K. workers to keep the economy afloat through the coronavirus emergency, the government announced Friday.
  • A group of Democratic senators sent a letter to Amazon on Friday pressing the online retailer about workplace safety at its distribution facilities amid the spread of coronavirus.
  • Delivery and take-out options are twice as popular as usual amid the coronavirus, according to data compiled by Yelp.

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