End corporate stock buybacks. One of the major causes of income inequality and wage stagnation is the growing corporate use of stock buybacks to drive up stock prices which is one of the major factors in computing executive compensation. Statistics show that companies making up the S&P 500 index from 2003 to 2012 used 54% of their earnings to buy back their stock. Dividends use an additional 37% of earnings. That leaves only 9% to pay for new plants and equipment, R&D, and raises for employees.