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Marathon Petroleum Took Billions in Bailouts, Then Laid Off Nearly 2,000 Workers

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Marathon Petroleum Corp's Los Angeles Refinery in Carson, California.
The Marathon Petroleum Corp's Los Angeles Refinery in Carson, California on April 25, 2020. ROBYN BECK / AFP via Getty Images

Marathon Petroleum laid off nearly 2,000 workers across the U.S. despite taking more than $2 billion in federal tax bailouts meant to soften the blow of the pandemic, a new report from BailoutWatch says.


The company spent millions on lobbying, including on specific provisions in the Cares Act. "Executives receiving this bailout did nothing to address the [oil and gas] industry's fundamental unsustainability. Instead, these companies decimated their workforce with layoffs while maximizing profits for executives and shareholders," Jesse Coleman, a senior researcher at Documented Investigations, told The Guardian.

According to BailoutWatch:

Marathon Petroleum laid off 1,920 workers, about 9% of its workforce, after receiving tax breaks totalling $2.1 billion — about $1.1 million for every job eliminated. Devon Energy laid 22% of its staff, after receiving a $143 million tax windfall — $357,500 for each worker laid off. National Oilwell Varco also slashed payrolls by 22% after receiving a $591 million tax benefit. And Occidental Petroleum eliminated 2,600 jobs, 18% of its 2019 workforce, and collected a $195 million tax bailout — $75,000 in free money per job eliminated.

For a deeper dive:

The Guardian

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