Data & Reports


Reward Work, Not Wealth • Oxfam International

By Diego Alejo Vazquez Pimentel, Iñigo Macias Aymar and Max Lawson.

“Last year saw the biggest increase in billionaires in history, one more every two days. Billionaires saw their wealth increase by $762bn in 12 months. This huge increase could have ended global extreme poverty seven times over. 82% of all wealth created in the last year went to the top 1%, while the bottom 50% saw no increase at all.

Dangerous, poorly paid work for the many is supporting extreme wealth for the few. Women are in the worst work, and almost all the super-rich are men. Governments must create a more equal society by prioritizing ordinary workers and small-scale food producers instead of the rich and powerful.”

Overcharged: The High Cost of High Finance

By Gerald Epstein, Juan Antonio Montecino

“A healthy financial system is one that channels finance to productive investment, helps families save for and finance big expenses such as higher education and retirement, provides products such as insurance to help reduce risk, creates sufficient amounts of useful liquidity, runs an efficient payments mechanism, and generates financial innovations to do all these useful things more cheaply and effectively. All of these functions are crucial to a stable and productive market economy. But after decades of deregulation, the current U.S. financial system has evolved into a highly speculative system that has failed rather spectacularly at performing these critical tasks…”

The Tax Foundation is the nation’s leading independent tax policy nonprofit. Since 1937, our principled research, insightful analysis, and engaged experts have informed smarter tax policy at the federal, state, and global levels. For over 80 years, our goal has remained the same: to improve lives through tax policies that lead to greater economic growth and opportunity.

Fifty Shades of Green : High Finance, Political Money, and the U.S. Congress

Report by Thomas Ferguson, Paul Jorgensen, and Jie Chen

“Social scientists have traditionally struggled to identify clear links between political spending and congressional voting, and many journalists have embraced their skepticism. A giant stumbling block has been the challenge of measuring the labyrinthine ways money flows from investors, firms, and industries to particular candidates. Ferguson, Jorgensen, and Chen directly tackle that classic problem in this paper. Constructing new data sets that capture much larger swaths of political spending, they show direct links between political contributions to individual members of Congress and key floor votes…”

The Street, The Bull and The Crisis: A Survey of the US & UK Financial Services Industry

Presented by The University of Notre Dame and Labaton Sucharow LLP

“In this report, we present the findings of our collaborative study—the most detailed and expansive of its kind—to measure workplace ethics in the financial services industry. We surveyed more than 1200 professionals working in the United States and the United Kingdom. Respondents represented a broad spectrum of the industry, from young professionals to senior executives, investment bankers and investment managers, from San Francisco to Scotland.

Our findings are particularly compelling when compared to data from Labaton Sucharow’s 2012 benchmark study, Wall Street, Fleet Street and Main Street: Integrity at a Crossroads. In the three years since that report, regulations have taken hold in both the US and UK, and authorities have successfully investigated and levied record fines against numerous global banking giants. Various indicia of market health suggest that investors’ faith in the markets has somewhat returned. Against this backdrop, we wonder if that faith is rightly placed. Has the industry truly reformed or has the public grown complacent? Has enforcement deterred wrongdoing or are perpetrators finding new ways to evade the law? Are we just as, or perhaps even more, vulnerable to another financial disaster? What does the future hold? …”