How has financialization changed the real economy?

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investorzzo's picture
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How has financialization changed the real economy?

Inequality has skyrocketed in the United States over the past 30 years. And as we can see above, 30 years of massive growth in the compensation of the financial sector has tracked deregulation. It is also worth noting that this is a time period in which most of the gains from increases in productivity have been captured by the top 1% of Americans:

This sets up my first question: In what ways do we see financialization increasing the inequality of a society? If those gains to that 1% are predicated on complexity as a form of rent-seeking, or of high leverage ratios with the upside privatized and the tail risk losses socialized, this changes the narrative for much of the rationalization of this massive increase in inequality.

The follow up question is far harder: in what ways do we see the full concentration of power in the financial sector leading to stagnating wages? Is there a relationship here, and how best to investigate it? Does this power differential put labor in a weaker bargaining position? Does it distort the priorities and expectations of managers and CEOs? This question will need more exploration.

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