Washington D.C. – Government watchdog Accountable.US released a new analysis of earnings data of the top ten U.S. apparel companies by market capitalization finding that they all raised consumer prices while collectively reporting at least $12.9 billion in increased profits during their most recent fiscal years for a total of $13.6 billion. These same companies also doled out $7.6 billion on shareholder handouts in their most recent fiscal years, with $3.9 billion more in planned handouts.

“Big apparel are among the industries most unapologetic about charging their customers more during a fragile economic recovery, apparently just because they can. When many in the industry boast of being in better shape than even before the pandemic – reporting billions of extra profits and new rewards for investors – it’s obvious they didn’t need to mark up sticker prices for their customers to the degree they have,” said Kyle Herrig, president of Accountable.US. “Consumers should remember that these companies known for fast fashion had a choice, and they chose to chase fast profits instead of slowing down costs at the retail end.” 

The new analysis followed Accountable.US’ recent report digging into two major food categories — grocery and restaurants — under the CPI. The analysis found that the top-five companies within these two CPI categories all raised prices while collectively making at least $8.6 billion in extra profits during their 2021 fiscal years for a total of $38.7 billion. These same companies have also ramped up spending on stock buybacks and dividends by $11 billion year-over-year for a total of $37.6 billion

KEY FINDINGS FROM THE REPORT: