Labor Day: What's In Your Wallet?


"Land of opportunity, you say! You know damn well my children will be where I am -- that is, if I can keep them out of the gutter."

Chicago worker

"For most industrial workers of the Eighties, real wages were rising with aggravating slowness, and each year extremes of wealth jutted out more irritatingly. A titan like Marshall Field made $500 to $700 an hour; his non-executive employees were paid $12 a week or less for 59 hour weeks. Quickly made fortunes were lavished with infuriating conspicuousness -- on a mansion in red, yellow and black bricks, the purchase of a titled husband for the daughter, banquets where the cigarettes were wrapped in $100 bills, or a poodle was draped with a $1,500 collar. Just around the corner, slums were sprawling out, filthy, heatless, so dark their corners could not be photographed until flashlight photography was invented in 1887."

Eric F. Goldman
Rendezvous with Destiny (1955)


US fund managers earn 22,255 times average wage

WASHINGTON: Top private-equity and hedge fund managers made more in 10 minutes than average-paid US workers earned all of last year, according to a new study from two research groups.

The 20 highest-paid fund managers made an average of $657.5 million, or 22,255 times the US average annual salary of $29,500, said the study, released on Wednesday by Institute for Policy Studies and United for a Fair Economy. The study cited data from the US Labor Department and Forbes magazine.

“The fact that these pay levels for fund managers are so out-of-sight is going to drive up pay at publicly traded companies,” said Sarah Anderson, director of the global economy program at the Washington-based Institute for Policy Studies and a co-author of the study. “There are people out there with a straight face claiming that public company executives are underpaid.”

The private equity boom in the past year has pushed the pay ceiling for fund managers “further into the economic stratosphere,”...


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