According to the left-leaning Economic Policy Institute, profits at Ford, General Motors and Stellantis increased 92% from 2013 to 2022, totaling $250 billion. Forecasts for 2023 expect more than $32 billion in additional profits.
Profits at Ford, General Motors and Stellantis almost doubled between 2013 and 2022, totaling $250 billion, according to the Economic Policy Institute. Over the past four years of the now-expired UAW contract, vehicle prices increased 30% and CEO pay increased 40% while worker pay increased 6%.
The number of workers involved in major work stoppages hit the highest levels in decades in the years before the Covid-19 pandemic, particularly in 2018 and 2019. After subsiding during the pandemic, the number of workers who went on strike grew by 50% in 2022, according to a report by the Economic Policy Institute.
Practically speaking, flat funding represents a budget cut because of inflation, as well as an expanding payroll due to cost-of-living adjustments and merit raises, said Celine McNicholas, general counsel and director of policy and governmental affairs at the left-leaning Economic Policy Institute.
“But it’s not so much a question of just keeping the agency functioning and avoiding furloughs,” said McNicholas, who served as an NLRB official during the Obama administration. “If you want the agency to function the way the Biden administration wants—to be a bright spot for labor—then it absolutely needs a funding increase.”
Profits at the Big Three collectively ballooned 92 percent from 2013 to 2022, totaling $250 billion, according to an analysis by the left-leaning Economic Policy Institute released Tuesday. CEO compensation swelled by 40 percent through the same period.
According to a study by the nonprofit Economic Policy Institute, the big three automakers have posted cumulative profits of $250 billion in the last decade, while executive pay grew by 40 percent. The UAW wants those profits to be shared with workers. With skilled workers in high demand, the union is in a strong bargaining position.
Adjusting for inflation, autoworkers have seen their average wages fall 19.3% since 2008, according to Adam Hersh, senior economist at the left-leaning Economic Policy Institute. That’s because autoworker “concessions made following the 2008 auto industry crisis were never reinstated,” Hersh said in a recent blog post, “including a suspension of cost-of-living adjustments.”
The wealthy’s arrogance is wholly unearned. In the U.S. from 1978 to 2021, according to the Economic Policy Institute, economic productivity grew more than 60%. Yet the typical worker’s wages — which in previous decades had roughly tracked productivity — grew just 18%. The wages of the top 1% of earners, however, grew 385%. CEO pay grew by more than 1,000%.
From 2013 to 2022, profits for Big 3 automakers skyrocketed by 92 percent to the tune of $250 billion, according to number crunchers at the pro-labor Economic Policy Institute (EPI). Another $32 billion in profits across the three companies is forecast for 2023. CEO pay increased by 40 percent over the last decade, and the three companies paid out nearly $66 billion in shareholder dividend payments and stock buybacks to investors.
EPI reports that concessions made by workers during the 2008 auto industry crisis and government bailout were never reinstated after companies such as General Motors and Chrysler (now Stellantis) got back on their feet. Wages at both union and nonunion automakers have fallen behind inflation as a result, with average real hourly earnings dropping 19 percent since 2008.
Economic Policy Institute, which sources employment data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Local Area Unemployment Statistics and Current Population Survey, shows that in the second quarter of 2023 Florida’s Black unemployment rate was 3.6 per cent.
Less than 1% of all U.S. farms are audited for labor law compliance each fiscal year, according to a 2023 Economic Policy Institute report co-authored by Daniel Costa, the director of immigration law and policy research. Even though this figure accounts for all U.S. farms — not just those who hire H-2A workers — more than half of investigations uncover H-2A violations.
“(The wage and hour division of the Department of Labor) is underfunded and understaffed,” Costa said. “Employers can pretty much do whatever they want, and there’s a very low likelihood they’ll ever be investigated.”
Adam Hersh, senior economist at the Economic Policy Institute, said the Big Three can afford to pay workers more. In a blog post Tuesday, Hersh noted that the Big Three saw combined profits of $250 billion between 2013 to 2022 and expect to bring in more than $32 billion in additional profits for 2023. Hersh said in the post that the Big Three is arguing that paying workers more would jeopardize their efforts in producing more electric vehicles.
“Despite all the company tricks, there is more than enough money for them to make EV investments, to pay their workers a fair share, and to maintain healthy profits,” Hersh wrote in the post.
Nationally, CEO pay has risen significantly in the last four decades. A 2022 report from the Economic Policy Institute, a liberal think tank, projected that a CEO at one of the top 350 companies in the U.S. was paid paid 399 times as much as a typical worker in 2021 — a new record high from the last peak — a 372-to-1 ratio — in 2000.
According to the report, CEOs are getting paid more because so much of their pay is stock-related, widening the income gap between very high earners and the bottom 90%.
The signers of the letter include high-profile liberal groups like the Center for American Progress, the Service Employees International Union, the Communication Workers of America, the Economic Policy Institute and the Quaker group Friends Committee on National Legislation, as well as newer groups like the Working Families Party, Groundwork Collaborative and the Economic Security Project.
While advocates say the program is crucial for small farmers facing staffing troubles, critics say it has enabled a powerful industry to suppress wages. Workers participating in the H-2A visa program are paid 55 percent of the average wage received by other nonsupervisory workers in the United States, according to an analysis published by the Economic Policy Institute.
A 2021 analysis by the Economic Policy Institute, a pro-labor think tank, estimated that without policy intervention, meeting that goal would cost the US auto industry 75,000 jobs, since the majority of EV powertrain components are produced and assembled elsewhere.
But executive compensation soared, especially in the 1980s and 1990s, when CEOs were lionized and a large chunk of their pay was linked to their company’s stock performance. CEO pay skyrocketed along with the stock market, with the S&P 500 increasing by more than 1,000% since 1990. In the same period, workers’ wages, adjusted for inflation, have barely budged.
In 2021, CEOs earned 399 times the typical worker, the EPI report found.
“Obviously, CEOs should be the highest-paid person in an enterprise,” said EPI Chief Economist Josh Bivens, who co-wrote the report. “But the question is, how much higher than everyone else?”
“This is part of a much larger agenda of privatization and deregulation of our public institutions,” says Mast. “When you have youth potentially foregoing higher education, future earnings, and the ability to earn higher wages in our economy, their wages are depressed over their entire lifetime. That’s bad for the macro economy. It’s bad for adults… When youth are taking these jobs at low wages, it really pushes adults out of the labor market. Why would an employer hire an adult at $15 an hour, if they can pay a young person $10?”
Nina Mast went long with Fatherly on child labor, the laws that are sweeping the nation, why it’s a myth that paid work is good for kids, and why the child labor crisis isn’t new — it’s just been simmering under the surface.
Others also question the authenticity of some companies and organizations who “celebrate” this month for optics, but don’t focus on the issues facing the community—like the fact that Latina women make less than anyone else at 55¢ to the dollar a White man makes, or that Hispanic men made 14.9 percent less in hourly wages than comparable White men, according to the Economic Policy Institute.
Record inflation was a major reason but perhaps not the largest. When Congress allowed the expanded Child Tax Credit to expire, that was “particularly damaging to child poverty,” according to the Economic Policy Institute.
Economists from the left-leaning Economic Policy Institute released a statement that pointed out the effects of U.S. policy choices: “If policymakers were willing to maintain the pandemic-era CTC expansions, a much smaller share of children would be living in poverty.”
According to the Economic Policy Institute, 24 states have passed versions of the CROWN Act. California was the first state to enact the legislation in 2019. Legislation for a national CROWN Act has not been successful.
“The sharp reductions in child poverty in 2020 and 2021 that were engineered even in the face of a pandemic-damaged economy show the importance of policy decisions,” a statement from Economic Policy Institute’s Elise Gould and Ismael Cid-Martinez said. “If policymakers were willing to maintain the pandemic-era CTC expansions, a much smaller share of children would be living in poverty.”