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By / 6.23.2017

Michael Mandel, chief economic strategist at the Progressive Policy Institute, joined Alphachat to talk about his report, “The Coming Productivity Boom”, co-authored by Bret Swanson of Entropy Economics. Mandel argues that the decades-long productivity stagnation will end once companies in the “physical” industries — transportation, construction, manufacturing, healthcare, wholesale and retail trade — start investing […]

By / 6.18.2017

On June 7,  Axios  journalist Chris Matthews wrote a piece “Big Companies, Fewer Workers”  that said: The five most valuable companies in the U.S. are all technology firms that employ far fewer workers than their industrial predecessors. He echoes a common complaint. But is it really true? I decided to  compare employment at today’s most valuable […]

By / 5.23.2017

When Congress passed the Dodd-Frank Act, it included a requirement that U.S. companies annually report the ratio between their CEO and median worker pay. This modest provision takes effect this year, but it’s unlikely to reverse America’s widening pay gap.​ In fact, if President Trump has his way on tax reform, the earnings gap will […]

By / 5.15.2017

The problem today is too little technology. Physical industries haven’t kept up. Some anxious forecasters project that robotics, automation and artificial intelligence will soon devastate the job market. Yet others predict a productivity fizzle. The Congressional Budget Office, for instance, expects labor productivity to grow at the snail’s pace of 1.3% a year over the […]

Good news: The robots may not destroy us after all. A few weeks ago, I wrote a column that outlined the worries of big thinkers such as Stephen Hawking and Andrew Yang who are predicting a wave of job destruction caused by automation, robots and artificial intelligence. Michael Mandel begs to differ. Mandel is chief […]

By / 4.4.2017

Think back to the first half of the 20th century, when superstar companies of the likes of Ford, General Motors, General Electric, DuPont and Bethlehem Steel literally grew from nothing to employ hundreds of thousands of workers. These innovative market leaders, notably feted by business historians such as Alfred Chandler, pioneered new products and production […]

By / 3.31.2017

Just over a year ago, PPI unveiled a big ideas blueprint with a prescient subtitle: Unleashing Innovation and Growth: A Progressive Alternative to Populism. We knew that progressives in the United States and Europe needed better answers to the economic and cultural grievances that have fueled the rise of a retrograde populism and nationalism around […]

By / 1.13.2017

WASHINGTON— The Progressive Policy Institute (PPI) today released a new study, “A Historical Perspective on Tech Jobs,” authored by PPI Chief Economic Strategist Michael Mandel comparing job creation performance among tech companies in the United States to employment leaders of the past. The study finds that today’s big tech companies are following a similar or better employment trajectory […]

By / 12.6.2016

We in the US have been understandably obsessed with the outcome of the presidential election. But the rest of the world keeps moving forward. For example, last week Colombia ratified a historic peace treaty between the government and the rebel movement. PPI was privileged to be in Bogota just this October, where we held a […]

By / 11.30.2016

Everyone has seen this chart, or something similar, recently. It tracks the production of the manufacturing sector over the past twenty years. Looks pretty good, doesn’t it? Since 1996 manufacturing industrial production has risen almost 40%, despite intense global competition.   But now let’s add another line to the chart–this time, manufacturing industrial production after we […]