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Trump signs economic relief bill, and lawmakers debate $2,000 stimulus checks: Here's how the headlines could affect your money

You might be able to get a bigger tax break on charitable donations in 2021.

Mandel Ngan | AFP | Getty Images

Market jumps to record high after Trump signs the Covid-19 relief bill, and lawmakers plan to vote on a measure to boost stimulus checks to $2,000. Plus, taxpayers can take a bigger tax break for charitable donations in 2021. Here's how the headlines could affect your money.

Market jumps to new record high

The major indexes finished Christmas week mixed, with the Dow gaining less than 0.1% for the week and the Nasdaq up 0.38%. The S&P had a loss of 0.17% for the week.

Monday morning, however, all three major indexes hit new record highs after President Trump unexpectedly signed a Covid-19 relief bill. 

Trumps signs pandemic aid, government spending bill

On Sunday, President Trump signed the $2 trillion pandemic aid and full-year government spending bill into law. Covid-relief provisions include $600 stimulus checks for many Americans, and an additional $300 per week in unemployment benefits. The president had held up the package last week, calling the bill a "disgrace" and demanding lawmakers increase the direct payments to $2,000.

The House plans to vote Monday on a measure to boost the year-end stimulus payments to $2,000, and in a statement Sunday, Trump said the Senate would also "start the process for a vote that increases checks to $2,000."

Check out Grow's calculator to see how much you could get, based on the $600 figure Trump signed into law.

Taxpayers can deduct more charitable donations in 2021 

The spring CARES Act created a charitable contribution deduction allowing people to take an above-the-line deduction for up to $300 in cash donations to charity during 2020. The new Covid-19 relief package increases the amount to $600 for joint-filers starting in 2021. For single-filers, the amount stays at $300. 

If you itemize your taxes, you may be able to claim a deduction for even more charitable donations. Hang on to your receipts to ensure you can claim the break.

Tax credits vs deductions: Here's the difference

Video by Stephen Parkhurst

Words you've heard: Above-the-line deduction

An above-the-line deduction is a tax break that's available even if you take the standard deduction. A below-the-line deduction is available only to people who itemize their deductions. 

Although the daily news can have an impact on your wallet, remember to take a long-term outlook when it comes to decisions on spending, saving, and investing.

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