AP: Publicly traded firms get $300M in small-business loans

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In this April 17, 2020, photo, Zachary Davis poses for a photo at The Penny Ice Creamery in Santa Cruz, Calif. An investigation by The Associated Press found that the federal Paycheck Protection Program, which was supposed to provide small businesses like Davis’ with access to cash to support their employees, also provided hundreds of millions of dollars to large publicly traded companies. (AP Photo/Martha Mendoza)

(AP) — An Associated Press investigation has found that a relief fund Congress created to protect small businesses amid the coronavirus crisis has helped companies with thousands of employees, past regulatory run-ins and risks of financial failure even before the economy got walloped.

The Paycheck Protection Program was supposed to help small businesses, which typically have less access to quick cash and credit.

Its $349 billion in emergency loans are intended to keep workers on the job and bills paid on time.

But the AP found 75 companies that collectively received $300 million were publicly traded, and some had market values well over $100 million.

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