Although there has been no specific commitment, National Economic Council Director Larry Kudlow did not rule out a third round of funding for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP).
Kudlow over the weekend told CNN's Jake Tapper on "State of the Union" that a third round of PPP, which issues emergency loans to struggling small businesses, may be needed. "We waited a little bit too long, I thought, when the last tranche ran out," he said. "Let's not make the same mistake again."
The PPP kicked off as a result of the $2 trillion stimulus bill, which allocated $349 billion for the program. Those portions of the loans that are used by the recipients for expenses such as payroll won't need to be repaid, and the U.S. Small Business Administration is fully guaranteeing all the loans.
That first round of funding ran out in just two weeks, at which point banks still had massive PPP application backlogs. For instance, JPMorgan Chase (NYSE:JPM) said it loaned out $14 billion in round one and still had a backlog of about $26 billion in requests.
Congress then signed off on another round of stimulus close to $500 billion, allocating another $310 billion to the PPP. But as of May 1, more than $175 billion of that had already been loaned out through more than 2.2 million loans, according to the U.S. Treasury Department. And many believe the full $310 billion is already used up considering the significant backlogs banks have built up.
"Let's execute the continuation of what we already have done; let's see what the results are... and then we will see in a couple of weeks what needs to be done and perhaps how to do it," said Kudlow.