Americans don’t think their stimulus check will get them far

As Americans anticipate the arrival of their stimulus checks, it appears that many aren’t optimistic that the one-time payment will help them stay afloat for one month.

After President Trump signed the CARES Act – a $2.2 trillion stimulus package aimed to help millions of Americans during the coronavirus outbreak – a new study found that the $1,200 payment many Americans are set to receive won’t help in the long run.

Just less than one in three Americans (31%) said they believe the stimulus check won’t be enough to sustain their financial well being for one month, according to a new study by

Eight percent of respondents felt that the stimulus check wouldn’t help them at all, according to the survey, which polled 1,465 American adults.

“This payment will not be a financial panacea, but it is sorely needed by millions,” Greg McBride, Bankrate chief financial analyst, said in a press statement. “For those already suffering from income disruptions, the payment will be needed for day-to-day essentials and monthly obligations. Otherwise, padding the emergency savings is a much-needed step for many households.”

Even with financial help, nearly two-thirds of Americans (64%) said the payment will cover expenses for less than three months, according to the survey. Just 11% of respondents receiving the check said it would maintain them from three to less than five months.

The checks, which were passed in March, will provide up to $1,200 for adults, $2,400 for married couples and $500 per child.

How Americans decide to spend their stimulus check varies.

Half of the respondents said they would use the added funds to help pay monthly bills like rent and utilities, while others said they’d focus on essentials like food, medicine and supplies (41%), upping their savings (30%), and paying down debt (25%).

Some said they’d put the money toward booking a future vacation or buying concert or sports tickets later in the year.