A project of the
Institute for Policy Studies

New Research & Commentary

Trump’s Trade Agenda: A Wake-Up Call

Shifting power from countries to corporations in trade negotiations hurts both people and the planet. Will the president’s trade agenda put workers’ rights ahead of profit and plunder?

Listen, Billionaire Doomsday Preppers

Your wealth isn’t going to save you from the social collapse you fear. Your only real solution: Bring your wealth home and invest in community resilience to ensure the survival of all.

How Do We Best ‘Save the Poor’?

The data is in: Shared growth, not top-heavy growth, helps the poor. The real income of the bottom 50 percent in America declined by 1 percent between 1978 and 2015, amid a growing U.S. economy.

Naming and Shaming Overpaid CEOs

A veteran executive compensation analyst provides some valuable ammunition for shareholder activists fighting to crack down on America’s excessive executive pay.

Enlisting Millennials for the Resistance

The newly created Resist365 is taking aim at the inequality-expanding agenda of the new Trump administration — and in the process inspiring a new generation of progressive leadership.

Who Cares About the Stock Market?

Ignore all the hyping about Dow 20,000 and other market gyrations. Only the affluent are really benefiting from rising share prices. About 40 percent of all stock belongs to the top 1 percent.

Who Should Own Our Infrastructure?  

Infrastructure spending should benefit the public good, but Donald Trump’s approach to fixing our roads and bridges benefits wealthy private interests at the expense of the rest of us.

States Take on the Hedge Fund Chiefs

A Connecticut state legislator explains why she’s fighting for fair taxation of hedge fund managers. Her proposed new legislation, part of a regional effort, would ax the notorious carried interest loophole.

How UK Foreign Aid Benefits the 1%

An arm of the British agency supposedly devoted to development has invested in luxury hotels and gated communities, all the while funneling profits into the pockets of top executives.

OneWest: The Art of the Runaround

After years of red tape, a homeowner realized the Treasury nominee’s bank was bent on foreclosing on her home.

Blogging our Grand Divide

What Explains the Racial Wealth Gap?

A new study shows the legacy of racism far outweighs individual financial decisions in driving the growing gap between black and white families.

Solidarity for Black Workers at Nissan

The lead organizer of a union drive with the predominantly African American workforce at a Mississippi factory is building power through alliances with civil rights, faith, and student activists.

Policing in America’s Plutocracy

The White House wants to see local cops cracking down on poor people who break federal laws on immigration. How about a crackdown on the rich who scoff at federal tax laws?

Inequality Analysis for the Busy Activist

Love Thomas Piketty, but don’t have the time for his brick of a book? Here’s the perfect pocket-sized reader to get you up to speed on what all the inequality hype is about.

A New Rationalization for Riches

Right-wingers are celebrating a provocative — and deeply depressing — new global history of those rare moments where distributions of wealth have become significantly more equal.

To Save Main Street, Tax Wall Street

Tax avoidance by the wealthiest Americans is drying up our heartland communities and squelching opportunities for young people.

Baldwin and the Racial Wealth Divide

A new film depicts the black-white divide in a tone both historic and timeless, demanding its audience look directly at our nation’s sins, both past and present.

Standing Up for ‘Bullied’ CEOs

Fortune 500 chiefs make twice as much in a month as U.S. workers make in a decade. But any move to require corporations to document that disparity, a new Trump appointee likes to argue, would be shameful.

5 Ways to End CEO Pay Subsidies

Ordinary American taxpayers are subsidizing excessive CEO pay through a variety of channels. These five reforms could help end these subsidies.

Trump’s Bad Deal on Trade

Trump says he’ll spike bad trade deals, but he’s still letting the big corporations that write them make the rules.

Our top reads

Twin Peaks Planet

Between our world’s twin peaks — the ever-richer global elite and the rising Chinese middle class — lies what we might call the valley of despond: the stagnating incomes of the advanced-country working classes. (source)

The Rise and Rise of the Top 0.1 Percent

New research unveiled in 2014 has solved the puzzle in our statistics on economic inequality. (source)

World’s 400 Richest Add $92 Billion in 2014

The globe’s 400 wealthiest billionaires are ending the year worth a combined $4.1 trillion, an average $10.3 billion each. (source)