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Economists Beg Congress to Send More Covid-19 Stimulus Checks: CNBC After Hours's MacKenzie Sigalos brings you the day's top business news headlines. On today's show, CNBC's Ylan Mui breaks down a new letter from more than 100 economists begging Congress to send out another round of direct checks to the American people. Plus,'s Leslie Josephs dives into this weekend's record-high pandemic air travel, and the dilemma facing the airline industry.

Economists are calling for more stimulus checks. Here's where assistance plans stand

For Americans who have had a tough year financially amid Covid-19, a second set of $1,200 stimulus checks would provide some much welcome relief.

But lawmakers on Capitol Hill still need to work out their differences before they can approve another coronavirus stimulus package that will trigger those payments.

Now, a group of more than 125 economists including Jason Furman, a former top economic advisor to President Barack Obama, is calling for more direct cash payments to American families to help them weather the economic effects of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The initiative was organized by the Economic Security Project, an advocate of guaranteed income.

Airline bookings drop ahead of Thanksgiving as coronavirus infections spike

Airline executives warned Thursday that bookings are starting to drop as new coronavirus cases hit records and government health officials advise against travel over Thanksgiving.

"Certainly with the increase in infection rates really throughout the country we've seen a dampening of demand," American Airlines President Robert Isom said during the Skift Aviation Forum on Thursday. "It's really too soon to tell how deep and how long there may be a depressed environment but we've seen some weakening of bookings."

Isom's comments came after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention advised the public to avoid travel over Thanksgiving, typically a busy weekend for airlines when travelers are willing to pay high prices to visit relatives.

Biden chooses former Fed Chair Janet Yellen to be Treasury secretary

President-elect Joe Biden has chosen former Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen as Treasury secretary, a historic decision that could make her the first woman to lead the department, according to people familiar with the matter.

Yellen, 74, is widely seen as a politically "safe" pick for the role, likely to garner support from Senate Republicans as someone capable of pursing bipartisan compromise during an otherwise fragile time for the economy.

A graduate of Brown and Yale universities, Yellen was also the first woman to serve as Fed chair after her Senate confirmation in 2014.

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