Please pass the gravy
The Globe's Steve Syre paints a very unflattering picture of corporate America, one that has feasted on the carcass of American workers. How? It's as plain as the "productivity gains" on the fattened bottom lines.
A good way to measure the results of productivity gains is to look at a company’s profit margins. Those same big companies that make up the S&P 500 have reported an after-tax profit margin of 5.95 percent, on average, since 1993, says Howard Silverblatt of Standard & Poor’s.
The S&P 500 companies reported a profit margin of 3.63 percent during the third quarter of 2008, below average as you would expect as the economy tanked, but improved to 6.49 percent in the same quarter last year. The margin ballooned to 8.31 percent during the second quarter of this year, not far from the record high of 8.95 percent recorded in 2006.
So Happy Black Friday, Small Business Saturday and Cyber Monday. After all, isn't that what the holiday season is all about?