Wow. Our experiment is off to a great start—let's see if we can finish it off sooner than expected.
So who's benefited and who hasn't from the current recovery following the Great Recession? I think you know the answer already, but just to make it official, here's a report from researchers at Northeastern University's Center for Labor Market Studies:
Between the second quarter of 2009 and the fourth quarter of 2010, real national income in the U.S. increased by $528 billion. Pre-tax corporate profits by themselves had increased by $464 billion while aggregate real wages and salaries rose by only $7 billion or only .1%. Over this six quarter period, corporate profits captured 88% of the growth in real national income while aggregate wages and salaries accounted for only slightly more than 1% of the growth in real national income. The extraordinarily high share of national income (88%) received by corporate profits was by far the highest in the past five recoveries from national recessions.
Here it is in table format, in case you want to see comparisons to previous recessions and recoveries:
Plainly, what's needed to address this crisis is tax cuts for corporations and reduced federal spending on workers. But who will speak up for our downtrodden corporate sector? It is a vexing problem.