As we take a three-day weekend to celebrate those who labor, let us take a moment to remember the families who won’t be planning picnics or a last trip to the beach. Despite some positive economic indicators, 9.7 million Americans are still out of work, almost a third for more than six months. More than seven million more have taken part-time work at poor wages to make ends meet even though they need full time work to pay the bills. And three-quarters of a million more have little hope and have given up looking for work and as a result are no longer counted as “unemployed.” (They are just “out of the labor force.”)
A new report from the Institute for Policy Studies (IPS) calculates that the Affordable Care Act (ACA), popularly known as Obamacare, reduced taxpayer subsidies by more than $72 million last year. It did this by capping the deductions that currently reward companies for providing excessive pay to their CEOs.
The Permanently Protect Tenants at Foreclosure Act of 2013 (H.R. 3543, S. 1761) is just one of the many pieces of unfinished business for the 113th Congress. This bill would make permanent the only federal protection for renters living in foreclosed properties.
New proposals on the state, local, and federal levels aim to tackle inconsistent hours, haphazard scheduling practices, and on-call shifts among part-time workers. Such practices can wreak havoc on workers' finances, families, and health.
USA Today published a story last week entitled “20 big profitable companies paid no taxes.” Using data provided by S&P Capital IQ, the newspaper identified 20 firms that paid no federal taxes in the second quarter of this year despite reporting $4.4 billion in second quarter profits. Collectively, these 20 CEOs were paid $240 million by the corporations they lead, an average of $12 million per CEO.
The Unemployment Insurance (UI) program was signed into law by President Franklin D. Roosevelt on Aug. 14, 1935, in the midst of the economy’s most severe contraction. At its lowest point, a quarter of the workforce was jobless, and in some areas, two-thirds of the unemployed had not worked for a year or more.
Standard and Poor’s (S&P), a company recognized around the world as an international financial research and credit ratings company, said last week that the American economy would benefit from reduced inequality.
For breadwinners struggling to find work, unemployment insurance acts as a backstop against the worst financial devastation. A new study by the National Bureau of Economic Research found that in states where unemployment compensation was more generous and extended benefits were available for a longer period of time, homeowners were less likely to be behind on their mortgages and lose their homes.
Last December, National Priorities Project and the Center for Effective Government noted that "hundreds of billions of dollars in federal spending are missing from USASpending, the website designed to show the public how their tax dollars are spent."
The Child Tax Credit (CTC) provides families as much as $1,000 per child in tax relief. This partially refundable credit, when combined with the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC), lifted 5.3 million children out of poverty in 2012, helping to improve the lives of low-income working families.