Where has all the surplus gone?
Based on the information gathered by NerdWallet, especially the data on top executive pay vs. corporate earnings, the surplus is being appropriated from workers within private corporations and then distributed not to the government in taxes; instead, a large share is distributed to the chief executive officers while the rest, one presumes, is handed over to other private entities inside and outside the firms.
Kraft Foods is a good example. It paid federal income taxes at a rate of only 8 percent and distributed to Irene Rosenfeld, chairperson and CEO, $21,944,694, which was 228 time what the average Kraft worker received in salary and benefits.*
While we’re at it, here are the different corporate tax rates: the statutory rate, the rate reported by the corporations, and the rate actually paid to the U.S. government.
Thanks to Nerdwallet, we now where the surplus has—and has not—gone.
*Readers can use the Nerdwallet site to gather the information on their own favorite corporations.