Together, these facilities could deploy up to $2.3 trillion in new credit to the economy during the pandemic crisis period. Without major changes these facilities will not be effective in getting assistance to those most impacted by the crisis, and disclosure and transparency regarding specific borrowers and loan terms is lacking. Our comment provides specific recommendations to address these issues.
Congress needs to resist calls from private equity executives to gain access to pandemic-related bailout programs. Private equity-owned firms are not comparable to ordinary small businesses, who cannot draw on deep-pocketed Wall Street owners who could support them if they chose to do so. Private equity (PE) funds are pooled investment funds managed by Wall Street firms that purchase operating companies. Prominent examples of private equity-owned portfolio companies include Toys ‘R Us, Shopko, and TeamHealth.
The track record of private equity funds demonstrates that these firms will wherever possible seek to divert income streams, including government support, to wealthy private equity executives rather than supporting employment and customer service at portfolio firms.
Private equity firms have driven much of the rise in surprise billing that threatens the financial stability of vulnerable patients as well as families’ health and peace of mind.
“PIR LLC will have to generate substantial additional revenue to service the debt which could force PIR LLC to take advantage of its monopoly position to raise prices to unsustainable levels, impose new service charges, reduce technical upkeep that could impair web connectivity or non-profit email traffic, or pursue other business strategies that could undermine the independence of non-profits including suspending or transferring domain names, in effect a censorship-for-profit strategy that has been used by other domain registries and internet companies.”
The private equity industry promotes itself as serving the investing public — including union and other pension funds — by providing reliably superior returns than the stock market. But the reality is that PE investments are not necessarily better performers, their promises too often rely
Private equity has pushed into the high-priced consumer loan industry, offering payday and other consumer loans that profit off trapping borrowers in a cycle of debt. Private equity firms own over 5,000 storefront payday and online lenders that often make loans at 300% annual percentage
News Release: Report Highlights Private Equity Ownership of Texas Plant as Possible Danger to Health, Environment
Following last month’s explosions at a petrochemical plant near Beaumont, Texas on the Gulf Coast, a new report draws attention to the private equity industry’s growing control of companies in this sector through a business model that may increase health, environmental, and safety risks. This financial engineering often allows private equity firms to extract wealth from the companies they purchase, but can result in intense pressure to cut costs, resulting in layoffs or reduced spending on operations that can lead to substandard products or services.
The day before Thanksgiving, a chemical plant operated by the TPC Group exploded in Port Neches, Texas spewing contaminants, forcing over 50,000 people to evacuate, and leaving the community with the lingering aftereffects of an industrial disaster. The TPC Group is owned by two private equity (PE) firms, SK Capital Partners (SK) and First Reserve. The private equity owned chemical plants in Texas held by SK Capital have a long record of environmental violations — not just the TPC Group factories but other SK Capital portfolio firms.
In The News: It’s Time for Congress to Do Something About the Economic Mess that Private Equity Giants Have Created (Business Insider)
Nobel laureate economist Joseph Stiglitz: “[A] recent study by groups including Americans for Financial Reform found that private-equity bankruptcies in the retail industry alone cost 600,000 jobs. One of those laid off, Giovanna De La Rosa, told of her experiences in this publication. The best outcome would be fewer bankruptcies, but when they happen, the welfare of workers needs to be at the top of the list, not at the bottom.”
“I wasn’t sent here to safeguard and protect profit,” Ocasio-Cortez said in a video from the hearing circulated by Americans for Financial Reform, “I was sent here to safeguard and protect people.”