Global Economy

The Global Economy Program provides research, communications, and networking support to dynamic economic justice movements in the United States and around the world. Our goal is to speed the transition to an equitable and sustainable economy while reversing today’s extreme levels of economic and racial inequality and excessive corporate and Wall Street power. The program focuses its work on six inter-related areas:

Inequality and CEO Pay

The program collaborates with a broader IPS team to produce Inequality.org and a related weekly newsletter that highlights the latest data and the sharpest strategies to reverse extreme inequality in the United States and around the world. The program is also a leading resource on one key driver of inequality — runaway CEO pay. For more than two decades, our annual report series “Executive Excess” has drawn extensive media coverage to the issue of CEO pay and practical solutions. A newer report series, “A Tale of Two Retirements,” is the first to track the staggering gap in retirement benefits between wealthy CEOs and ordinary Americans.

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Trade, Investment, and Mining

The program works with grassroots activists around the world to advance alternative international trade and investment policies that elevate environmental, human, and labor rights above narrow corporate interests. In recent years program staff have played a lead role in supporting a successful campaign in El Salvador to defend against global mining corporations’ attempts to steamroll local resistance to harmful extractives projects.

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Recent Posts Related to Trade, Investment, and Mining

Black Workers Initiative

The Black Worker Initiative aims to help expand opportunities for black worker organizing and thereby greatly contribute to the revitalization of the U.S. labor movement as a whole. This program is deeply committed to helping achieve both the historic and contemporary aims of the labor and civil rights movements.

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Wall Street and Global Finance

IPS staff play lead roles in coalitions working to restore the financial sector to its proper purpose of serving the real economy. We track the reckless Wall Street bonus culture, for example through our annual “Off the Deep End” report on the size of the financial industry bonus pool versus the cost of paying restaurant servers and domestic workers a living wage. We also advance innovative reforms such as a small tax on Wall Street speculation to curb short-term trading and generate massive revenue for urgent public needs, such as fixing our crumbling national infrastructure.

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Low-Wage Workers

IPS staff play lead roles in coalitions working to restore the financial sector to its proper purpose of serving the real economy. We track the reckless Wall Street bonus culture, for example through our annual “Off the Deep End” report on the size of the financial industry bonus pool versus the cost of paying restaurant servers and domestic workers a living wage. We also advance innovative reforms such as a small tax on Wall Street speculation to curb short-term trading and generate massive revenue for urgent public needs, such as fixing our crumbling national infrastructure.

Featured Report

Recent Posts Related to Low-Wage Workers

Inequality.org

Inequality.org and a related weekly newsletter are key resources for the public at large, journalists, teachers, students, academics, activists, and others seeking information and analysis on wealth and income inequality. Here, we collect the latest developments on inequality and keep readers abreast of relevant information concerning the widening wealth gap. We highlight stories from activists on the front lines of the fight against extreme inequality and share information that can be used for ongoing campaigns.

Latest Work

house ways and means committee

House Tax Proposal Falls Short of Making Billionaires Pay Their Fair Share

The Ways and Means Committee plan would make a down payment on much-needed public investments but doesn't go far enough to address wealth inequality.

94 Organizations Urge Congress to Stand Up to Pressure from Corporate Lobbyists and Pass President Biden's Build Back Better Plan

Letter denounces corporate lobbyists’ assault on vital programs and services supporting children and working families and combating climate change.

93 Organizations Urge Congress to Stand Up to Pressure from Corporate Lobbyists and Pass President Biden's Build Back Better Plan

Letter denounces corporate lobbyists’ assault on vital programs and services supporting children and working families and combating climate change.
ceo looking out of office window

Four CEO Pay-Related Taxes in Play on Capitol Hill

Revenue options that would also curb runaway executive pay have strong appeal across the political spectrum.
amazon workers protesting in bessemer alabama

The Labor Day Dreams of Black Workers

Leading Black labor organizers and policy advocates share their visions for advancing racial equity in the COVID recovery — and beyond.

Black Labor Leaders and Advocates Reflect on the Pandemic and What Comes Next

We asked nine leading Black labor organizers and policy advocates how to advance racial equity in the COVID recovery — and beyond. Here are their responses.
protesters holding a sign that says hunger strike

10 Charts on the State of U.S. Workers on the 2nd Pandemic Labor Day

While workers are continuing to struggle under COVID, corporate lobbyists are converging on Capitol Hill to block proposed pro-labor reforms.
elly may clampett laura ingalls

Elly May Clampett Is the Target of Biden’s Tax Plan, Not Laura Ingalls

The capital-gains-tax proposal would actually protect family farmers like those on “Little House on the Prairie” and tax the windfall riches ‘earned” by ‘The Beverly Hillbillies’
mexico flag and european union flag

Risks for Mexico in the Renegotiation of its FTA with the European Union

To end neoliberalism and defend energy resources, Andres Manuel López Obrador must step up and avoid the inclusion of supranational arbitration mechanisms in a renegotiated FTA with the European Union.
two people standing far apart to depict inequality

Despite Republican Boycott, Dems Launch New Inequality Committee

Over the next two years, they will study the problem of economic disparity and develop policy solutions.
home care worker tending to an elderly man

Corporations Should Pay Their Fair Share for Human Needs

Corporations pay lower taxes than ever. A modest corporate tax hike would be transformative.
clock with the words tax time

To Break the Corporate Tax Logjam, Tax Overinflated CEO Pay

An across-the-board rate hike and a CEO pay surtax would send a powerful message: All large profitable corporations must pay their fair share.
jeff bezos' blue origin building

Jeff Bezos Should Have Thanked American Taxpayers for Paying for His Space Ride

From the very start, the giant retailer's business strategy has relied on dodging taxes and pocketing public subsidies.
imran khan speaking publicly

One Step Forward, Two Steps Back in the Struggle Against Anti-Democratic Corporate Trade Rules

Pakistan is the latest country to reject the system that allows private investors to sue governments in international tribunals. But Ecuador is back-tracking and the lawsuits continue to proliferate.
A demonstrator confronts police in Guatemala

Excessive Corporate Power Breeds Political Repression

In the face of extractive industries' enormous economic clout, Central Americans are facing increasing displacement and threats to their democratic rights.
nba team golden state warriors playing against the toronto raptors

Sports Teams: The Everlasting Tax Shelter for Billionaires

A perverse loophole allows owners of profitable teams — and their heirs — to lower their tax bills by claiming huge paper losses.
person paying taxes

11 Charts on Taxing the Wealthy and Corporations

Here's everything you need to know about the urgency of fair tax reforms to pay for vital public investments and reverse extreme inequality.
picture of uncle sam

How Uncle Sam Can Encourage Corporations to Be More Patriotic

By using the power of the public purse, we can encourage federal contractors to be upstanding corporate citizens.
Protest of Tahoe Resources' Escobar silver mine outside the Constitutional Court of Guatemala

Vancouver Mining Corp Shrugs Off Violence Against Guatemala’s Indigenous People

Pan American Silver paves the way for ecologically and socially destructive mines, and lets communities deal with the fallout.
group of people migrating

Excessive Corporate Power is a Root Cause of Migration

Under U.S. trade agreements, corporations are suing developing country governments for sums that far outstrip the value of humanitarian aid.

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Reports

Executive Excess 2021

Low-Wage Workers Lost Hours, Jobs, and Lives. Their Employers Bent the Rules — To Pump up CEO Paychecks.
social graphic - How US Trade Policy Failed Workers And How to Fix It

How U.S. Trade Policy Failed Workers — And How to Fix It

Now more than ever, we need a new trade policy to support an economic recovery from the pandemic and to start building an economy that works for everyone.

Mining Injustice Through International Arbitration

Across the Global South, international mining companies use disturbing tactics to forcibly open mining operations against the wills of local communities.

Black Immigrant Domestic Workers in the Time of COVID-19

Black immigrant domestic workers are at the epicenter of three converging storms—the pandemic, the resulting economic depression, and structural racism.

Report: Executive Excess 2019

Beyond NAFTA 2.0

Report: Extraction Casino

Report: OceanaGold in the Philippines

Ten Violations that Should Prompt Its Removal

Executive Excess 2018

How Taxpayers Subsidize Giant Corporate Pay Gaps
jp-morgan-chase-banking-ceo-pay

Report: CEO-Worker Pay Ratios in the Banking Industry

A decade after the crash, excessive pay is still a problem at the mega-banks and the 2nd-tier firms that stand to benefit from the current deregulation push.

Report: Corporate Tax Cuts Boost CEO Pay, Not Jobs

This 24th annual report rebuts the GOP claim that slashing the corporate tax rate will lead to more and better jobs.

Report: The CEO Pay Tax Break in the Republican Health Care Proposal

The cost of removing Obamacare limits on the tax deductibility of executive compensation, based on pay data at the top 5 insurers.

Report: The Wall Street Bonus Pool and Low Wage Workers

The 2016 bonus pool held enough dollars to lift the pay of all of the country's more than 3 million servers up to $15 an hour.

Report: A Tale of Two Retirements

As working families face rising retirement insecurity, CEOs enjoy platinum pensions.

Help Spread the Word: #CanURetire

Help us spread the word about our latest report, "A Tale of Two Retirements: As Working Families Face Rising Retirement Insecurity, CEOs Enjoy Platinum Pensions."

Executive Excess 2016: The Wall Street CEO Bonus Loophole

This 23rd annual report reveals how taxpayers are subsidizing financial crisis windfalls.

Utilities Pay Up

How ending tax dodging by America's electric utilities can help fund a job-creating, clean energy transition.

Mining, Corporate Social Responsibility, and Conflict: OceanaGold and the El Dorado Foundation in El Salvador

This study finds that OceanaGold’s attempt to rebrand its proposed gold mine in El Salvador through the use of a company-sponsored foundation at the local level is deceitful, disrespectful and dangerous

Off the Deep End: The Wall Street Bonus Pool and Low-Wage Workers

The financial industry’s 2015 bonuses were double the combined earnings of all Americans who work full-time at the federal minimum wage.

CEO Stock(ing) Stuffers

Loophole allowed 10 companies to shave $180 million off their taxes for CEO pay last year.