Affected by the COVID-19 epidemic, a large number of small businesses in the United States have closed down this year, unemployment has soared, social inequality has increased, and millions of Americans have fallen into poverty.
According to a recent analysis report of the Washington Post, 45 of the 50 largest companies in the United States have made profits in the face of the epidemic since March this year. However, many profitable companies have laid off workers and instead distributed most of their profits to shareholders, exacerbating the social crisis caused by the epidemic.
The Washington Post’s analysis reported that although 90% of the 50 large enterprises have made profits despite the impact of the epidemic, at least 27 have laid off workers this year, with a total of more than 100,000 layoffs.
According to the data, from January to September this year, the economy of small companies generally shrank seriously due to the impact of the epidemic.
The revenue of these 50 large companies increased by an average of 2%, but the proportion of layoffs in large companies was higher than that of small companies. From April to September, they distributed more than $240 billion in profits to shareholders.
The Washington Post said that the data exposed the contradictory logic of large companies. On the one hand, they flaunt their achievements and regard themselves as the leader of economic recovery, and on the other hand, they will share the profits obtained through massive layoffs to shareholders.
In the face of the epidemic, these large enterprises originally promised to shoulder the responsibility of fighting the epidemic, and signed a public declaration vowing to pay more attention to the well-being of employees and communities and ensure that no layoffs will be made.
However, 21 large companies that made profits during the pandemic have broken their promises, and many have cited the decline in performance caused by the epidemic as an excuse for cutting human costs.
Companies that lay off workers at a profitable basis include Berkshire Hathaway, an investment company owned by investment tycoon Buffett, as well as Wal-Mart, Microsoft and others.
In response, American experts said that these largest and most successful companies are making huge profits and helping society recover from the biggest recession in decades, which is their social responsibility, and now they are increasing economic polarization.