The Guardian: Revealed: top US corporations raising prices on Americans even as profits surge

April 27, 2022 Media

As inflation shot to a new peak in March, cost increases exacted a deep toll on the economy, eating into most Americans’ wages and further imperiling the financially vulnerable. But for many of the US’s largest companies and their shareholders it has been a very different story.

One widely accepted narrative holds that companies and consumers are sharing in inflationary pain, but a Guardian analysis of top corporations’ financials and earnings calls reveals most are enjoying profit increases even as they pass on costs to customers, many of whom are struggling to afford gas, food, clothing, housing and other basics.

Economists who reviewed the data say it’s more evidence of a clear reality: Consumers are taking a financial hit as companies and shareholders profit or are largely shielded.

“It’s obvious that corporations are trying to pass on any form of short-term pain they might be feeling … and that’s serving the top, wealthiest class instead of those in need of fair wages or products that are affordable,” said Krista Brown, a policy analyst with the American Economic Liberties Project.