The rules that shape corporate America incentivize behavior that has led to the economic puzzle we see today: high corporate profits coupled with low and stagnant wages. “Shareholder primacy” is the practice in which corporations prioritize shareholder payouts over productive investment and employee compensation. This way of operating dominates corporate decision-making today, so employees have

Increased monopsony in labor markets has allowed corporations to gain outsized power over individuals, leaving workers with less agency over the choices in their lives. Labor market monopsony refers to the concentration of employers and the resulting power they have to shape labor markets to their advantage. More concentration leads to fewer employers who offer

Since the 1970s, America’s antitrust policy regime has been weakening and market power has been on the rise. High market concentration—in which fewer firms exist in a given market—is one troubling symptom and cause of market power. From 1985 to 2017, we saw an increase in the annual number of mergers from 2,308 to 15,361.

The American economy no longer functions to the benefit of American workers. Despite record profits and increased productivity, wages have been stagnant. In fact, despite being 75 percent more productive in 2016 than in 1973, the average worker earned just 12 percent more. An emerging body of research chronicles the extent of labor market monopsony—where

Stock buybacks are having their day in the news—and state policymakers have the ability to end the dominance of this “shareholder first” behavior. Businesses have seen a massive tax cut as a result of the GOP tax law, but the jobs promised with the Tax Cuts and Job Act have yet to materialize. Instead, companies

Today, the Roosevelt Institute released Powerless: How Lax Antitrust and Concentrated Market Power Rig the Economy Against American Workers, Consumers, and Communities, a report I wrote with my colleagues Eric Harris Bernstein and John Sturm. In this report, we catalog the growing body of evidence that strongly supports our view that the economy is afflicted

As workers, as consumers, and as citizens, Americans are increasingly powerless in today’s economy. A 40-year assault on antitrust and competition policy—the laws and regulations meant to guard against the concentration of power in private hands—has tipped the economy in favor of powerful corporations and their shareholders. Under the false assumption that the unencumbered ambitions

Last week, a bipartisan group of senators voted to roll back regulations put in place in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis. Those regulations rewrote the rules of our banking system that had long prioritized profits over people—a system that for generations exploited and perpetuated racial inequities and ultimately foiled the financial wellbeing of

The dramatic rise in stock buybacks following the passage of the GOP tax plan, also known as the Tax Cut and Jobs Act, has elevated the role stock buybacks play in on our economy. Estimates have shown more than $100 billion in new stock buyback programs have been authorized since the tax law’s passage. Additionally,

Submitted testimony from Lenore Palladino, Senior Economist and Policy Counsel, Roosevelt Institute March 15, 2018   Dear Senator Martin, Senator Winfield, Representative Lesser and Members of the Banking Committee: My name is Lenore Palladino. I am a Senior Economist and Policy Counsel at the Roosevelt Institute. Thank you for the opportunity to testify before you

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