Overnight Finance

On The Money: Treasury announces efforts to help people get stimulus payments | Senate panel unanimously advances Yellen nomination for Treasury | Judge sets ground rules for release of Trump taxes

Happy Friday and welcome back to On The Money. 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-Biden administration announces efforts to help people get their stimulus payments: The Treasury Department on Friday announced new efforts to help people get coronavirus stimulus payments they haven't yet received.

The announcement from Treasury comes after President Biden signed an executive order that directs federal agencies to take further action to address the pandemic-related economic downturn.

The plan: 

  • Treasury said Friday that it will build on the IRS's previous work to establish web tools that nonfilers can use to provide information to the agency so that they can receive their payments. 
  • The department also said that it would reach out to people who may not have internet access or may not speak English.
  • Treasury also said it plans to reach out to households that were issued paper checks or debit cards that haven't yet been cashed or activated. 
  • And it said it plans to conduct research to figure out which groups of potentially eligible households have not yet received payments, in an effort to help it and the IRS target their outreach efforts.

The Hill's Naomi Jagoda has more here.

The move to help link Americans with their stimulus checks is one of several executive actions Biden has taken to fight the economic impact of the pandemic.

  • The president on Friday signed an executive order expanding the scope of nutrition assistance programs, an effort to address a growing hunger crisis caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, and boosting worker protections. 
  • He also took steps to lay the groundwork to increase the minimum wage for federal employees and contractors to $15 per hour.

LEADING THE DAY

Senate panel unanimously advances Yellen nomination for Treasury: The Senate Finance Committee on Friday unanimously advanced Janet Yellen's nomination to be Treasury secretary, moving President Biden's choice for a key Cabinet position that much closer to confirmation.

The committee approved the nomination by a vote of 26-0.

  • Yellen has an extensive background in economic policy, having previously served as chair of the Federal Reserve and the Council of Economic Advisers. 
  • If confirmed, as is widely expected, she would be the first woman to be Treasury secretary.
  • Democrats praised Yellen's qualifications and her support for substantial coronavirus relief. Republicans did not raise questions about her qualifications but more about Biden's spending and tax proposals.

"There's no doubt about the qualifications of Dr. Yellen," said Finance Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa). "That's not to say, however, that I do not have concerns, but they're policy concerns."

The Hill's Niv Elis, Naomi Jagoda and I have more here.

ON TAP NEXT WEEK

Tuesday:

  • The Senate Commerce Committee holds a confirmation hearing for Gina Raimondo to be secretary of Commerce at 10 a.m.

Modern Credit Systems, Alternative Data & the American Dream

For many Americans who lack access to traditional credit, the traditional markers of stability and success may remain out of reach. Some have suggested incorporating alternative data like cell phone, utility, and rent payments in credit scores. What guardrails can ensure consumer protection? Can alternative data be used to increase access to credit for underserved families? What needs to be done for lenders to become comfortable using alternative data in credit underwriting? Suze Orman, John Hope Bryant, Reps. Joyce Beatty (D-OH) and Patrick McHenry (R-NC) headline a conversation on modernizing the credit system. RSVP today

Thursday:

  • The Senate Banking Committee holds a hearing on the nominations of Rep. Marcia Fudge (D-Ohio) to be secretary of Housing and Urban Development and Cecilia Rouse to be chair of the White House Council of Economic Advisors at 10 a.m.

GOOD TO KNOW

  • A federal judge on Friday issued a temporary order that will require the Treasury Department to give former President Trump's personal lawyers 72 hours notice before providing Trump's tax returns to House Democrats.
  • State and local governments face a $225 billion shortfall for the coming fiscal year, according to a study from the left-leaning Center for Budget and Policy Priorities.
  • Airbnb on Friday sent a letter to the Biden administration offering to help with the coronavirus vaccine distribution especially in rural communities. 

ODDS AND ENDS

  • Paypal on Thursday took down the account of Jenna Ryan, a Texas woman who reportedly flew a private plane to the Capitol riot, after she claimed she raised $1,000 for legal fees and other losses due to her arrest.
  • The U.S. Chamber of Commerce, in a joint campaign with the Bipartisan Policy Center, launched a six-figure advertising campaign on Thursday to urge Congress to enact an ambitious infrastructure package.
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