Are you relying on the $2,000 Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) payment to meet your living expenses? There is good news for you. The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) has extended the CERB maximum limit by four weeks. This means you can claim another $2,000 CERB by September.
The CRA started the CERB on April 6 for 16 weeks and then extended it by another eight weeks until September 26. The end objective of the benefit is to provide emergency payments to Canadians who lost their source of income because of the pandemic. The $2,000 amount for six months aimed to help applicants meet the necessities until they find a new job or return to work.
Since March 15, the CRA has paid $69.4 billion in CERB to 8.61 million Canadians. The benefit has helped 4.1 million applicants return to work. This second CERB extension will cost the CRA another $8 billion.
The extra $2,000 CERB
The CRA allowed eligible Canadians to claim a maximum of $12,000 CERB over 24 weeks between March 15 and September 26. Now, it has extended this maximum to 28 weeks, which means you can get an extra $2,000 CERB up to $14,000. You can only claim this extra $2,000 if you are earning less than $1,000 a month and are actively searching for a job.
Remember, the CRA will still end the CERB in September. The government will replace the CERB with Employment Insurance (EI) and Canada Recovery Benefit (CRB). These replacements will come into effect on September 27.
If you were eligible for the CERB in the previous months and did not claim it, you can do so before December 2. The CRA will pay you retrospective benefits as long as you are eligible during the CERB benefit period. Beyond September 26, if you are still out of work because of the pandemic, you can avail of the CERB alternative.
The transition to CERB alternative
The government introduced the CERB alternative, as four million Canadians still depend on CERB. To support them, it will transfer around three million to EI and one million to the CRB. The CRA will manage the CRB and Service Canada will manage the EI.
If you meet the eligibility criteria for EI/CRB, you can get $1,600 per month in benefits. However, these payments will be made in arrears instead of an advance. The government will reveal details on how to apply for EI and CRB in the next few days.
How to double your extra $2,000 CERB
The extra $2,000 CERB has come as a welcome bonus. If you have already arranged for money and don’t have any urgent expenses coming in, invest this amount in a growth stock.
You can convert your $2,000 CERB into $4,000 in two to three years by investing it in Kinaxis (TSX:KXS). The company provides supply chain planning solutions to large enterprises. Despite the pandemic, its second-quarter revenue surged 45%, as many large enterprises renewed their subscription for a longer term.
Kinaxis’s revenue growth shows its resilience to the crisis. While the pandemic has delayed some renewals and the signing of new contracts, its long-term growth remains intact.
The company has acquired artificial intelligence (AI)-based demand-planning software Rubikloud to enhance its demand forecast and analysis using machine learning. The U.S.-China trade war and the global pandemic are bringing drastic changes in consumer demand and supply chain. The growing complexity is increasing the need for supply chain planning.
Kinaxis stock is currently in its high-growth stage. The stock doubled this year and surged 60% last year. If you had invested $2,000 in Kinaxis in January 2019, you would have $6,250 by now. That’s more than three months of CERB. The stock still has the potential to double in two to three years, as the supply chain becomes more complex.
It is good to invest in high-growth stocks through your Tax-Free Savings Account (TFSA). It will allow your investments to grow tax-free and exclude your withdrawals from taxable income. The CERB is already taxable. At least you can save your CERB earnings from taxes.