Criminal behavior

Corporate America

Corporations are sitting on the biggest piles of cash in human history, they’re making bigger and bigger profits, getting more and more tax breaks (all while asking for even more)… and they’re still not hiring.

This is absolutely criminal.

Profits have grown five times faster than jobs at America’s largest publicly-traded companies over the past dozen years, according to a new analysis by Reuters.

Staff levels rose by 31 percent from 2001 to 2013 at the companies analyzed while inflation-adjusted profits grew 150 percent, the wire service reports. The analysis is based on corporate filings by 100 of the largest publicly owned U.S. companies. The filings do not specify where hiring took place, and it is likely that a significant portion of the job growth reported in the documents came from outside the U.S.

Nearly a third of the companies actually shed jobs over the period Reuters examined, including several that shrank payrolls amid rising profits and revenues. Verizon, for example, sliced its workforce by over 30 percent while doubling its profits.

The analysis adds to the wealth of evidence that the success of businesses and their shareholders has become decoupled from workers’ success. Wages have been stagnant throughout the same period despite steadily rising worker productivity, leading the economists at the Economic Policy Institute to label the past 10 years a “lost decade” for the American worker. If the minimum wage had risen in proportion to worker productivity over the past several decades, it would now stand at nearly $22 an hour.