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Quick Hit
by Ellyn Fortino
4:57pm
Wed Sep 28, 2016

Report: U.S. Taxpayers Subsidized $725 Million In Wall Street CEO Bonuses In The Last Four Years

Twenty leading U.S. banks collectively paid their top five executives $2 billion in tax-deductible bonuses between 2012 and 2015, according to a recent report examining Wall Street CEO pay.

That $2 billion figure works out to be a tax break valued at $725 million, or $1.7 million per executive per year, the Institute for Policy Studies (IPS), a progressive think tank, found.

"Taxpayers should not have to subsidize excessive CEO bonuses at any corporation," report co-author and IPS Global Economy Project Director Sarah Anderson said in a statement. "But such subsidies are particularly troubling when they prop up a pay system that encourages the reckless behavior which caused one devastating national crisis -- and could cause more in the future."

Quick Hit
by Ellyn Fortino
9:35am
Fri Jul 22, 2016

Top CEOs Made Less In 2015, But They Still Earned 276 Times More Than Average Worker

CEOs at America's largest firms received an average of $15.5 million in compensation last year, meaning they earned 276 times more than the typical worker in 2015, new research shows.

The $15.5 million in average CEO compensation was down about 5 percent from 2014, when the figure was $16.3 million, and up 46.5 percent since the economic recovery began in 2009, according to the Economic Policy Institute (EPI).

"Most (83 percent) of the decline in CEO pay from 2014 to 2015 can be explained by the drop in the value of realized stock options in that period," EPI's report reads. "Therefore the decline in compensation does not reflect any structural change in how CEO compensation is set or changes in corporate governance. CEO compensation will likely resume its upward trajectory when the stock market resumes upward movement."

Quick Hit
by Ellyn Fortino
4:26pm
Mon Apr 4, 2016

Internal Poll Shows Most Business Executives Back Minimum Wage Hike, Other Pro-Worker Measures

Most U.S. business executives support policies to boost the minimum wage and provide workers with paid sick time, predictive scheduling and increased maternity and paternity leave, an internal poll shows.

The poll findings, obtained by the progressive watchdog group Center for Media and Democracy, clash with the policy positions of business groups fighting against such proposals.

Luntz Global, operated by GOP pollster Frank Luntz, conducted the poll of 1,000 U.S. business executives on behalf of the Council of State Chambers. Among those surveyed, 63 percent belong to a chamber of commerce.

According to the findings, 80 percent of survey respondents backed an increase in their state's minimum wage, compared to 8 percent who opposed the idea.

PI Original
by Ellyn Fortino
4:10pm
Fri Nov 13, 2015

Top 100 CEOs Have As Much In Retirement Assets As 50 Million U.S. Families

The top 100 U.S. CEOs have as much in their retirement accounts as more than 50 million American families combined, a recent analysis shows. 

Quick Hit
by Ellyn Fortino
12:51pm
Thu Jan 29, 2015

Study: Several U.S. Corporations 'Fleecing' Uncle Sam, Spending More On CEOs

A number of large U.S. corporations spent more on executive compensation than federal income taxes in 2013, according to a recent analysis by the Institute for Policy Studies and the Center for Effective Government.

Seven out of the 30 largest U.S. corporations examined for the "Fleecing Uncle Sam" report -- including Boeing Co., Ford Motor Co., Chevron Corporation, CitiGroup Inc., Verizon Communications, JPMorgan Chase & Co. and General Motors Co. -- spent $121 million on total compensation for their seven CEOs in 2013. On average, that's $17.3 million per CEO.

The seven firms reported over $74 billion in combined U.S. pre-tax income in 2013, but they collectively raked in nearly $1.9 billion in U.S. corporate income tax refunds that year. As such, the average effective tax rate in 2013 for the seven corporations was negative 2.5 percent, the analysis found.

"If the seven giant, highly-profitable corporations that paid their CEOs more than Uncle Sam had paid the full statutory corporate tax rate of 35 percent, they would've owed $25.9 billion in federal taxes," the report states. "Instead they received $1.9 billion in refunds, for a total difference of $27.8 billion."

Quick Hit
by Ellyn Fortino
1:05pm
Fri Sep 5, 2014

Report: Obamacare Curbed Taxpayer Subsidies For Health Insurer Executive Pay

The 2010 Affordable Care Act (ACA) sharply reduced taxpayer subsidies last year for executive pay at the nation's 10 largest publicly held health insurance companies, according to a new report by the Institute for Policy Studies (IPS), a Washington-D.C.-based think tank.

Last year, an ACA provision took effect that put a $500,000 cap on the tax deductibility of health insurer executive compensation. Previously, the companies had a $1 million limit on the deductibility of executive pay from federal corporate income taxes. Now, health insurance companies are allowed to deduct only up to $500,000 in combined performance-based and salary pay per employee each year.

As a result of the deductibility limits under the health reform legislation known as Obamacare, the country's top 10 health insurers saw their collective corporate taxes increase by an estimated $72 million in 2013, according to the report, "Executive Excess 2014: The Obamacare Prescription for Bloated CEO Pay."

Quick Hit
by Ellyn Fortino
12:24pm
Wed Aug 27, 2014

Study: Wage Growth Remains Sluggish For Most American Workers

Real hourly wages fell for just about all U.S. workers, including those with a college degree, between the first half of 2013 and the first half of 2014, according to an analysis of new wage data by the Economic Policy Institute (EPI).

The EPI study, "Why America's Workers Need Faster Wage Growth — And What We Can Do About It," looked at the most recent and available wage data by decile and educational attainment.

"The recovery has not been completely jobless for a while now, but it does continue to be pretty much wageless, or at least wage growthless," said EPI economist Elise Gould, the study's author.

Quick Hit
by Ellyn Fortino
2:53pm
Thu Jul 24, 2014

Chicagoans Push Back Against Walgreens' Potential Tax Inversion (VIDEO)

Tax fairness activists delivered 70,000 petition signatures to a downtown Chicago Walgreens store Thursday, calling on the nation’s largest pharmacy chain to remain a U.S company and pay its "fair share of taxes."

It is rumored that Deerfield-based Walgreen Co. is considering plans to reincorporate itself offshore in Switzerland, a "tax haven," through a maneuver called a corporate tax inversion. Such a move could reportedly cost U.S. taxpayers $4 billion in lost tax revenue over a five-year period.

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