Just days after an alarming study by the Urban Institute found that nearly half of the American public can't afford basic necessities like food, healthcare, and housing, new Commerce Department data released on Wednesday showed that corporate profits are soaring to new heights thanks in large part to President Donald Trump's $1.5 trillion tax cuts.
Viewed side-by-side, this contrast between booming profits for corporations and dwindling quality of life for much of the U.S. population provides a striking picture of America's two-tiered economy, one that has become even more lopsided in favor of the rich since President Donald Trump took office in 2017.
While rich companies like Walmart and Target are enjoying huge profit boosts, most American workers have seen their wages decline over the past several months—a fact that undermines Trump and the GOP's glowing assessment of the U.S. economy.
Corporate profits in blue.
Wages in red.
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— Samuel Otten (@ottensam) August 30, 2018
As the Wall Street Journal reported on Wednesday, the Commerce Department said that "its broadest measure of after-tax profits across the U.S. rose 16.1 percent in the quarter [that] ended June 30 from a year earlier, the largest year-over-year gain in six years."
"Because of the lower corporate tax rate signed into law last year," the Journal added, "taxes paid by U.S. companies in the quarter were down 33 percent from a year earlier, according to the government data, or more than $100 billion at an annual rate."
Massive Wall Street banks have been some of the biggest beneficiaries of President Donald Trump's profoundly unequal economy. According to Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) data out last week, America's financial sector—which recently received a bipartisan gift in the form of a major regulatory rollback—saw a record $60 billion profit boom.
"Last quarter, big banks set a new record with $60 billion in profits—half of it as a result of the
GOP tax scam," Americans for Tax Fairness wrote in response to the new data. "What did working families get? More empty promises that corporations would use their tax cuts to boost wages. If it sounds unfair, that's because it is."