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Differential incidence

By Owen Paine on Tuesday November 23, 2010 07:54 PM

Job stagnation doesn't mean bottom-line stagnation, it seems. Thus the NYT:

"The nation’s workers may be struggling, but American companies just had their best quarter ever... Since their cyclical low in the fourth quarter of 2008, profits have grown for seven consecutive quarters, at some of the fastest rates in history."
Coupla points get made: companies are squeezing more out of less human-capital hours in the Old Countries, but more juicy still are the fresh fields and pastures new:
"Economic conditions in the United States may still be sluggish, but many emerging markets like India and China are expanding rapidly."
Until we adopt the global game board perspective of our multinational limited liability outfits, we just won't find the rational core to this north-south irrationality.

Comments (12)


I don't get this. How can companies be making profits outside the US, if there is a global slow-down? If US wages have been stagnant for 20 (?) years, can they wring enough more productivity out of them to result in their most profitable quarter ever? Or is the financial so large that these results are mainly reflecting its' profits?


I don't get this. How can companies be making profits outside the US, if there is a global slow-down? If US wages have been stagnant for 20 (?) years, can they wring enough more productivity out of them to result in their most profitable quarter ever? Or is the financial sector so large that these results are mainly reflecting its' profits?

Senecal, the profits are not just from finance.

The main answer is that these giants are paying literal peanuts for wages in fully modern, cutting-edge-automated factories, then selling the results for prices many, many times above the costs of production. The mark-up is so high, it even covers things like marketing and managerial salaries, and still yields record book profits.

There is also a boom happening in high-end retailing: http://www.consumertrap.com/2010/11/twin-quotes-for-late-2010.html

And China is not slumping. Its demand for capital goods, raw materials, and "consumer" goods alike is still exploding.



guiding star nerf stalinoid chief :

"The markets, supply of exploitable labor, and investment strategies of U.S. transnational corporations are worldwide in scope now.

Their production sites stretch across regions and time zones, thanks to new technologies that, in effect, reduce time and distance
..... Unlike in the early postwar period,
the corporate planning unit is a world economy... "


if we could adjust the book profits of these MNCs
to locate where the surplus market value is extracted
we'd see huge surpluses generated in the south hemi

these are globally extracted profits sen baby

and wage tax and regulation arbitrage at one end
and discriminatory final market prices
in each bordered market area
this cross border gimmick just keeps paying off and paying off

as to differential rates of expansion

GM has "grown" its china market so much recently its approaching the size of their US market
in fact there were quaters last year when gm sold more cars in china then here

it gets intricate once you start looking at any one company like gm or ibm or ge or microsoft
or any giant retailer like walmart

so what use is uncle land ??

more comrade webbster :

"the transnational elite ...is turning
(the usa ) into its personal ATM machine
and a military juggernaut to enforce its will at home and abroad. "


the imperial dollar and the armada

btw anyone who thinks uncle sam's role in each of these avenues is waning
have lost contact with reality
its well intended wishful thinking of course
cause everyone even pinkos need hope
--anarcho nihilists stirnerians excepted of course---
so look to the great south hemi
take heart its a big world
like japan in 30's -40's china
today despite full mobility and no rival
uncle is still just an 800 pound monkey
in a five thousand pound bag
plenty of room for red foxes

but if you want hope
look to


Corporate profits before tax: [2005] 1,640,158 [2006] 1,822,720 [2007] 1,738,355 [2008] 1,333,211 [2009] 1,316,690

and now annualized corp profits are an annualized 1.659,...'the highest figure ever recorded since the govt began keeping track...' [unless we look back at NIPA data for just a few years].

besides infected by the massive credit/fictitious capital formation, i very strongly suspect the tax based Commerce Dept/BEA/NIPA profit mismeasures total mass and certainly does not take accoubt of relation to total capital.

nice propaganda though



"Pre-tax domestic nonfinancial corporate profits — a mouthful, but also seemingly a fair measure of the underlying health of business in America — are nowhere near record levels as a share of national income. They exceeded 15% of national income once in the late 1940s, and repeatedly topped 12% in the 1950s and 1960s; in the third quarter of this year, they were 7.03% of national income."


"Who is doing better? ... according to the BEA's data, financial industry profits and "rest of world" profits — that is, the money U.S.-based corporations make overseas — are relatively much higher now than they were in the 1950s or 1960s. And the taxes paid by corporations are much lower now than they were then, as a share of national income."

get the drift ???


same drift
i've commented

on at variety of other
sites from original prudent bear
to cbs, angry bear, naked cap, the old

maxspeak and thought
you had

neolib project and modern transnational mode
of corp organization began some decades ago

no matter all the fixation on national as
primary unit of analysis its only one level


---neolib project and modern transnational mode
of corp organization began some decades ago---

as reaction to falling avg rate

slightly more recent global credit bubble and finacialization not disconnected
from transcyclic overaccumulation of
production cap

nomatter how blind there
have always been foreseeable limits

but pwogs and most lefties imo desire to save
that which they claim to be against

all academic heh


were always juan ??

i must confess i've failed to see the pattern
full flesh
pounded relentlessly enough

i like this analogy for the recovering neoclassically trained econ con

imagine the MNCs can set up border toll booths
and collect tarriffs set quotas etc
and by doing capture the "rents "
traditionally asigned to the local state
imagine emergent forex rates can be exploited "goin' both ways"
you have the "natural tilt "
for exporting capital with purchasing power max
and yet the occasional hot capital invasion
to crank up local values
only to follow up with a revulsion that
by this in out
international dependency
of the target nation state market
etc etc

btw i have reverted to the apparently nebulus
MNC label for these corporate types
to suggest we've gotten beyond
the trans national stage
so dear to main frame anti capitalists
of the 50-60's etc

the north south system has evolved considerably since decolonization


" no matter how blind there
have always been foreseeable limits"


get as precise a picture
of this higher irrationality produced by the lower rationality of free range private profiteering

"pwogs and most lefties imo desire to save
that which they claim to be against"

pwogs certainly
and hyper moralist and black flag lefties too
since Clio's "necessary " motions violate
their universal moral sense
no matter the class doin' the egg breaking

"as reaction to falling avg rate"

cut this out of the spiel
its not necessary and u get into data base wars

simply suggest corporations
are built to discover/create
higher profit opportunities
where ever ...24/7/365

"transcyclic overaccumulation of
production cap"

again conceal your meta economics
reveal only on
a need to know basis
for purposes of communication max


juan were also suamigo,
5to12, J. AJS, yon, and
one or two forgotten

juan once upon a time
worked for what you
a multi national

and its corp culture
was drfinitely

which may be one reason i use the term
trans [= 'beyond] national [a
qualitatively higher form
than mnc]

one which has trans
cended any national identity

even while playing nationalistic subsidy

all over thhe planet state regional local govts become labor contractors
tax shifters neoliberal robin hoods who need repair hasta la capucha y mas

juan once upon a time spent some
years exposed to dos and 'aid' folk
well as terratenientes, foreign minister,
judges, prisoners, egp, far...

and thereafter dicovered karl
demographically and community defense driven
types of self-organization, before he had

even a notion of the depth of kap
and karls other good stuff

juan still has only a notion
but perhaps a stiffer merangue
than the moderate conservative
hed been

mattick, grossman, rosa, leon have certainly influenced but none more than my econ 101
and its supreme disconnect

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