If CEOs Think Consumer Demand Is a Problem, They Should Demand Economic Policies That Address It

For indispensable reporting on the coronavirus crisis, the election, and more, subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily newsletter.


The Wall Street Journal reports that American CEOs are worried about the lousy state of consumer demand:

Chief executives at top companies expect to face a series of pitfalls over 2014, including wage stagnation in the developed world, uneven growth in the developing world and looming cuts in the U.S. health-care sector.

….In the U.S., executives highlighted wage stagnation and underemployment as undermining demand for their goods and services. For instance, although car sales have helped prop up overall growth in the U.S., Renault-Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn said the 15.7 million cars sold there last year was still below the level reached in 2007.

Alan Clark, chief executive of beer giant SABMiller PLC, said in an interview that growth for premium light beers, which make up a quarter of the U.S. market, is still slow because of higher unemployment or underemployment rates among beer drinkers.

….The problem of passing along high costs to employees also looms large. “It is not a solution to pass (health-care) costs on to the working class, who haven’t seen real wage increases,” said Bernard Tyson, chief executive of Kaiser Permanente.

This seems very sensible. Wage stagnation and unemployment are huge challenges for companies that make consumer products—which, eventually, includes just about every company in the world. So why aren’t these CEOs clamoring for economic policies that might actually address this?

SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

payment methods

SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate