Tax & Fiscal Policy | Page 4 | Business Roundtable


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What is Business Roundtable

Business Roundtable (BRT) is an association of chief executive officers of leading U.S. companies working to promote sound public policy and a thriving U.S. economy.

More Than Leaders. Leadership.

Business Roundtable is an association of chief executive officers of leading U.S. companies working to promote a thriving economy and expanded opportunity for all Americans through sound public policy.

About BRT

Business Roundtable supports tax and budget policies that promote U.S. business investment, competitiveness and job creation. Specifically, the Committee focuses on pro-growth reform of domestic and U.S. international tax rules and advocates for slowing the growth of federal spending to stabilize federal debt and achieve long-term fiscal sustainability.

The Top Line: A Modest 156,000 Additional New Jobs in September

Payrolls expanded at a modest rate in September as the U.S. economy added 156,000 new jobs, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Overall, the labor market is showing few signs of a pronounced upside or downside breakout. Wage growth accelerated, weekly hours picked up slightly, and the unemployment rate ticked up to 5 percent as more Americans entered the workforce. For more analysis, see The Top Line below or online here.

The Top Line: 1.4 Percent GDP Growth in Q2

The Top Line The U.S. economy expanded by 1.4 percent in Q2, according to the Bureau of Economic Analysis’ third estimate. In comparison, Q1 growth was just 0.8 percent. Robust consumer spending, positive net exports, and upwardly revised business investment were somewhat offset by weak residential investment and a decline in government spending. In addition, a sharp reduction in inventories subtracted 1.16 percentage points from GDP.

Business Roundtable Letter to EU Heads of State or Government Regarding State Aid Investigations

Business Roundtable sent the following letter to leaders of 28 European Union member states, calling on the EU to overturn the European Commission's order that Ireland recover €13 billion from Apple for alleged illegal state aid.

CEO Economic Survey Round-up: 'An Unfortunate New Normal'

Business Roundtable released its third quarter 2016 CEO Economic Outlook Survey today, and the results show a continuation of an economy that's failing to live up to its potential. CEOs report lower expectations for sales, roughly unchanged plans for hiring and nearly flat plans for capital spending over the next six months. GDP growth for 2016 was projected at just 2.2 percent.

The Top Line: Labor Market Cools

The labor market cooled somewhat in August after two consecutive months of robust growth, adding 151,000 jobs. (Bureau of Labor Statistics report.)

Payroll and wage growth moderated, weekly hours slipped, and the unemployment rate held steady at 4.9 percent. Although many economists expect labor market growth to moderate as the economy nears full employment, will the Fed wait for signs of overheating before moving to raise interest rates?

Business Roundtable Statement on European Commission Ruling Against Apple

The European Commission’s finding against Apple and the Irish government is the latest act of aggression by the EU against a law-abiding U.S. company and sovereign government.

The Top Line: Decline in Inventories Leads to Continued Slow Growth

The Bureau of Economic Analysis released its revised second quarter GDP estimate today, reporting that the economy grew just 1.1 percent (down from the previous estimate of 1.2 percent), following a first quarter estimate of 0.8 percent. Robust consumer spending and positive net exports were nearly offset by weak investment and a decline in government spending. In particular, a sharp reduction in inventories subtracted 1.26 percentage points from GDP.

Treasury Department Highlights Discriminatory EU State Aid Investigations

The Treasury Department’s white paper on European Union state aid investigations should be a wake-up call to the European Commission that it is well past time to stop its unprecedented and discriminatory state aid investigations against U.S. companies.  In a February 2016 op-ed, Business Roundtable President John Engler stated that these investigations were a blatant attempt by the EU to fill its budget holes by targeting U.S. companies. 

The Top Line: Economy Adds 255,000 Jobs in July, Unemployment Steady

The labor market exhibited signs of strength in July despite continued global headwinds and sluggish second quarter economic growth, adding 255,000 jobs in the month. According to the monthly report by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, payrolls registered a second month of robust gains, wages continued to rise, and weekly hours ticked up. Meanwhile, the unemployment rate held steady at 4.9 percent even as more Americans entered the labor force.

The Top Line: GDP Growth Disappoints in Q2 with Just 1.2 Percent Increase

The U.S. economy expanded by just 1.2 percent in Q2 2016 after growing by 0.8 percent (revised) in Q1, below economists' projections.


Committee Priorities

It has been over 30 years since major tax reform was last undertaken. The United States has failed to act while the rest of the world has implemented modern tax policies to aggressively compete for jobs and investment.

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Tax reform for all businesses is fundamental to strengthening the U.S. economy and ensuring that American workers and American companies can successfully compete around the globe. A modernized U.S. tax system with competitive tax rates and competitive international tax rules would promote growth through greater investment, higher wages and more jobs in the United States.

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Achieving Sound Fiscal Policy

Business Roundtable supports sound fiscal policy by urging Congress to pass annual budgets on time; appropriate funds early enough in the legislative session to avoid disrupting government operations; follow an orderly process to allow for required borrowing; and strengthen entitlements for the long haul.