Economic Equality is aimed at showing central banks and financial regulators how to put their formidable thumbs on the equality scale in favor of those whose income and wealth suffer so much in the wake of the great financial crisis. We will point to the most pressing questions monetary and financial-regulatory policy raise for U.S. income and wealth equality – and then answer them where data and other hard facts demonstrate ways to make a difference.
There’s of course a lot of talk about economic equality, but little of it addresses how financial policy after 2008 sharply widened the equality divide. Many inequality causes are good to know, but hard to fix – for example, demographic shifts cannot be changed by edict. Financial policy is different – decision-makers set it every day.
Economic Equality finds constructive solutions that optimize both economic equality and other policy goals, identifying trade-offs where a clear path through this complex landscape has yet to be identified. No financial policy-maker we know wants to make economic inequality worse – it’s just worked out that way. Monetary and regulatory policy are aimed at worthy goals: financial stability, consumer protection, economic recovery, and so forth. But, achieving these goals at unintended cost to economic equality is not only ultimately self-defeating, but also often unnecessary.
Economic Equality relies on research and commentary from Karen Shaw Petrou and others invited to join the debate to solve this problem. All submissions carry a by-line and other identifying information so you can judge them for any possible conflicts of interest. No third-party funding is accepted when commentary advances an interest group’s advocacy objectives. Where third-party foundation or similar funding is relevant, it is clearly disclosed. No funding or advocacy related to any political campaigns is accepted.
The 2016 U.S. election showed clearly how unequal many Americans think they are, and data proves that they are mostly right. Income and wealth equality have been on a downward slide for decades, but it become dramatically worse barely a decade ago even though underlying socio-economic trends stayed on course. We need to know what happened in 2008 and thereafter to worsen economic equality. Economic Equality will do its best to inform debate and push for change.