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Outrage: Almost 3,000 millionaires are collecting unemployment benefits – IRS Data Show


by Richard

bloomberg:

After the economy slipped into recession in 2008, millions of Americans received unemployment benefits to make ends meet — including almost 3,000 millionaires.

According to U.S. Internal Revenue Service data, 2,840 households reporting at least $1 million in income on their tax returns that year also collected a total of $18.6 million in jobless aid. They included 806 taxpayers with incomes over $2 million and 17 with incomes in excess of $10 million. In all, multimillionaires reported receiving $5.2 million in jobless benefits.

Congress in 2009 voted to exempt the first $2,400 of jobless benefits from federal income taxes. The Census Bureau last month reported the country’s poverty rate rose to 14.3 percent in 2009, the highest level in 15 years.

In addition to the millionaires, 8,011 households reporting income between $500,000 and $1 million in 2008 claimed jobless benefits totaling $52.8 million, the IRS data show.

“These were people comparable to your millionaires who clearly didn’t need the money but collected it nonetheless,” he said.

I think there are a lot more than 3000 millionaires collecting. According to the article, they define millionaire as someone earning over $1m over the course of a year, whereas the ‘normal’ definition is someone with a net worth of $1m or more.

There are blue collar workers that, had they bought a house in the right neighborhood with a modest salary, would be millionaires today. And, they may have lost their blue-collar job…meaning that they may actually need the money.

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