The billionaires and millionaires of Wall Street deploy so much money to influence American politics and society that we can easily lose track of how pervasive it is. They spread money around to campaigns, think tanks, and lobbyists. Wealthy executives finance universities, cultural institutions, and hospitals. And this historical moment has laid bare for all to see that Wall Street also finances a virulently anti-democratic strain in American politics, one that always takes aim at people of color.
Letters to Regulators: Letter to the SEC on Proposal to Modernize Shareholder Reports, Disclosures, and Fees
The Americans for Financial Reform Education Fund (AFREF) appreciates the opportunity to comment on the above referenced proposed rule (“the Proposal”) by the Securities and Exchange Commission (the “SEC” of the “Commission”) concerning the simplification and streamlining of the most useful information and fees to
Blog Post: How a Politically Connected Private Equity Firm Scored a Special Bailout for its Heavily Indebted Trucking Company
Private equity giant Apollo Global in 2019 lent large sums of money to trucking company YRC Worldwide. After Apollo’s executives reached out to the White House on getting bailouts in the spring, YRC managed, under mysterious circumstances, to be the greatest beneficiary of a special loan program for companies critical to national security.
Letter to Transition: SEC Needs Chair Committed to Corporate Accountability, Transparent Public Markets.
We urge you to nominate an SEC Chair who is committed to restoring corporate accountability and rebuilding robust, transparent public markets. Our country needs an SEC that will challenge powerful interests on Wall Street to better promote inclusive economic growth, while also protecting main street investors, pension plan participants, workers, and the communities in which we live.
Private equity pillaging of the retail industry has cost over half a million jobs amid over 18,000 store closures through February 2020, according to a new study, the first to examine job losses at the state level. The job losses occurred in every state, with more than 10,000 jobs lost in 20 states and more than 30,000 lost in California, Florida, and New York.
The folk legend Robin Hood was, as every child knows, the legendary outlaw who robbed from the rich to give to the poor. But in a reincarnation of a long-running Wall Street scheme, it is the wily financiers who rob from the ordinary folk holding investment accounts at Robinhood.
Today, private equity controls some 8,000 companies in the United States, more than twice as many companies as are publicly traded on U.S. stock markets. Private equity firms manage more than $4 trillion in U.S. assets and now own companies that collectively employ nearly 9 million American workers.
Like many PE firms, Sun Capital Partners often buys up existing businesses, loots their assets, squeezes workers, decimates jobs through layoffs and bankruptcy, and threatens workers’ retirement benefits.
The private equity industry, seeing a window of opportunity following the onset of the pandemic, has taken it upon itself to have the companies that it owns issue at least $10 billion in debt solely for the purpose of paying itself. This is yet another example of private equity looting.
In many ways, the private equity industry embodies some of the worst impulses of Wall Street, squeezing profits at the expense of workers and consumers, and insulating bad actors from risks. But these abuses are not inevitable. On the contrary, they are the result of laws and regulations that can and should be changed.
The problems the SEC identified include fund managers’ failure to make full and fair disclosure of conflicts of interest, charging improper fees, and failure to implement policies to prevent staff from trading on material non-public information. In other words, the SEC’s examinations have shown that private equity and hedge fund managers are consistently engaged in self-dealing and overcharging investors, like pension funds that provide for the retirement security of millions of Americans.