PayPal: the US government might be shut down, but its employees’ access to credit isn’t
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PayPal: the US government might be shut down, but its employees’ access to credit isn’t

Due to apparently intractable differences of opinion between President Trump and certain US lawmakers (specifically, their opposition to his proposed border wall between Mexico and the US), the federal government has been shut down since December 22, 2018. This is obviously a challenging situation for American politics, but it’s also challenging to people who work with the federal government, and whose take-home pay has been adversely affected by the situation. Enter PayPal: the online payments giant is keen to help.

PayPal’s share price has risen 9% so far this year

graph 22 paypal

Source: Yahoo Finance

Last Friday, PayPal said it will offer $25 million in credit to any of its users who work with the U.S. federal government – and, in a particularly charitable decision, all loans will be interest free! Government employees who are also PayPal Credit customers will be eligible for an interest-free advance of $500 each. The program will continue until the shutdown is over and employees “receive their first paychecks.”

The shutdown is having serious repercussions for the country. Some 800,000 people have found themselves suddenly without work (and pay), and a number of governmental functions remain impaired. This is bad enough on its own, but retailers have an additional worry: alongside the curtailed spending power of 800,000 people, how is the shutdown going to affect consumer confidence?

PayPal may not be able to run a government, but it can certainly help keep money flowing into pockets (and onwards, to retailers). It said that getting the money to workers will take 3 days from when their government employment has been confirmed.

Disclosure

Dominion holds PayPal in its Global Trends Ecommerce Fund.


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