Trump approves five-week extension for small business pandemic loan applications

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FILE PHOTO: A page from the PPP loan application that people are required to fill out for financial assistance due to the ongoing coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak is pictured on a desk in New York USA on May 7, 2020. REUTERS / Lucas Jackson

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. President Donald Trump issued a deadline extension to Jan.

The extension of the Payroll Protection Program (PPP), launched in April to keep Americans on company payroll and unemployment benefits, gives entrepreneurs an additional five weeks to apply for troubled financial aid.

Of the US $ 659 billion allocated by Congress, an estimated US $ 130 billion is still available. Critics fear the US Small Business Administrator’s office, which administers the loan, may continue to struggle to distribute the funds fairly.

From the start, the unprecedented first-come, first-served program had to grapple with technology and paperwork problems that resulted in some businesses failing while some wealthy businesses received funds.

The SBA’s Inspector General noted in May that some rural, minority and women owned companies may not have received loans because the agency is not prioritizing.

Reuters reported here on Thursday that a technical snafu in a U.S. government system resulted in many small businesses receiving loans twice or more, nearly a dozen people with knowledge of the matter said.

Reporting from Katanga Johnson; Editing by Mary Milliken and Chizu Nomiyama

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