DEFINITION of 'Stimulus Check'

A check sent to a taxpayer by the U.S. government. Stimulus checks are intended to stimulate the economy by providing consumers with some spending money. When taxpayers spend this money, it will provide a boost to retailers and manufacturers and thus spur the economy.

BREAKING DOWN 'Stimulus Check'

Stimulus checks have been mailed out to taxpayers on several occasions. These checks will vary in amount according to the taxpayer's filing status. Joint taxpayers will receive twice as much as those filing singly. Those who have unpaid back taxes will see their stimulus checks automatically applied to their outstanding balance.

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