The Big Banks Can Be Beaten

The Big Banks Can Be Beaten

When the 2008 financial crash slammed the New York City construction industry, Maribel Touré’s husband lost his job as an architect. On top of that, Maribel suffered a serious accident. But what really plunged the family into financial trouble was sending their...
Greece, Iran, and the Rules of the Game

Greece, Iran, and the Rules of the Game

Alexis Tsipras had a choice. As the leader of the fledgling Syriza government in Greece, he could have told the European Union to stuff its austerity plan. He could have taken the risk that the EU would offer a better deal to keep Greece in the Eurozone. Or, failing...
Explaining the Cyprus Shakedown

Explaining the Cyprus Shakedown

In June 2012, the Cypriot government requested a bailout after its two largest banks took massive losses—around 1.6 billion euros—on Greek government bond write-downs. In order to remain solvent, it was determined that Cyprus needed 17 billion euros in...
Spanish Austerity Savage to the Point of Sadism

Spanish Austerity Savage to the Point of Sadism

Nobel Laureate economist Joseph Stiglitz characterizes the Spanish bank bailout as “voodoo economics” that is certain “to “fail.” New York Times economic analyst Andrew Ross Sorkin agrees: “By now it should be apparent that the...
Europe’s Crisis and the Pain in Spain

Europe’s Crisis and the Pain in Spain

(Pictured: Anti-austerity protest in Belgium.) When the current economic crisis hit Europe in 2008, small countries on the periphery were its first victims: Iceland, Ireland, and Latvia. Within a year it had spread to Greece and Portugal, though the GDP of both...

Nation’s ‘Pay Czar’ Largely Impotent

When President Obama named a “pay czar” in June, he raised hopes that the era of out-of-control executive pay may be over. Unfortunately, the pay czar’s recently released rulings did little to alter a compensation system that was a key cause of the...

Neighbors Banding Together in Tough Times

We’re rooting for President Barack Obama and Congress to fix the economy, hoping they’ll find a way to compensate for the 7.4 million jobs that have disappeared since 2007 and assist the 1.7 million people who have lost their homes. But we also need to...

Remember the Real Villain–Wall Street

Americans of all political stripes, suffering in multiple ways from 12 months of economic collapse, are looking for somebody to blame. Yet the real culprits, the Wall Street executives who drove the economy into the ditch, have walked away largely unscathed. Indeed, a...
Executive Excess 2009: America’s Bailout Barons

Executive Excess 2009: America’s Bailout Barons

Ten of the top 20 financial bailout firms have revealed the details of stock options pocketed in early 2009. Based on rising stock prices, the top five executives at each of these banks have enjoyed a combined increase in the value of their stock options of nearly $90...

Beyond the AIG Bonuses

The incredible firestorm over the $165 million bonus payout at failed insurance giant AIG has dramatically revealed the depth of the public anger at private companies that enrich themselves at taxpayer expense. Congressional action to recoup these bonuses through...

Executive Pay and the Stimulus Bill

This memo critiques the executive pay provisions in the stimulus bill passed by Congress on February 13. It includes a chart comparing the stimulus provisions with the compensation restrictions in the original financial bailout legislation, as well as the Treasury...

IPS on the CEO Pay Caps

WASHINGTON – February 4 – Compensation experts with the Institute for Policy Studies (IPS) today called President Barack Obama’s $500,000 cap on executive pay at some bailed-out companies a “small, but very welcome first step toward ending...