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Reports

Dirty Money

Consumer Watchdog investigates and reports on industries, corporations and politicians that defy our ethical customs, social mores and rules of law. Our in-depth reports below span decades and take on the most powerful politicians and industries in America.

This analysis, “Refining Profits,” looks at how oil refiners in California fared over the last decade in their refining operaDons and compared the companies’ refining profits during periods of gasoline price spikes.

Health insurance premiums are increasing at a rate faster than medical inflation, especially in the volatile individual and small group markets, and worker incomes have not kept pace. The passage of the federal reform law triggered further outsized increases by insurance companies apparently seeking to establish high base rates in advance of the law’s implementation. 

From March to September 2013, an investigation was undertaken to detail the significant privacy issues Google+ users mayencounter when using the service. The evidence that follows willdemonstrate that Google+ allows its users to routinely and blatantly violate its User Content & Conduct Policy 

Internal documents obtained from the oil industry’s lobbying arm, the Western States Petroleum Association, show that the companies have made stopping California’s landmark climate change laws their top priority and will stop at nothing to achieve their ends.

An ambitious quest for in0luence with the US government is starting to pay off for search giant Google, a Consumer Watchdog investigation has found. 

Google has been a prominent beneficiary of the national home loan and foreclosure crisis of the past two years. The giant search engine company has profited by accepting deceptive advertising from fraudulent operators who falsely promise unwary consumers that they can solve their mortgage and credit problems.  

A review of profit, shareholder and government reports from the last decade show that Valero reaped extraordinary profits from its refining operations in the Golden State, while drivers emptied their wallets to fund this refiner bonanza. 

In this study, the Foundation for Taxpayer and Consumer Rights (FTCR)1 reviews the loss projections of medical malpractice insurance companies, beginning with the “insurance crisis” of the mid-1980s. The data show that medical malpractice insurers have historically inflated their loss projections and then revised their reported losses downward in subsequent years.

The oil industry is reporting second-quarter profits this week, and has signaled that refining profits will again be at record or near-record levels. Two consecutive years of soaring prices in spring and summer have equaled the price effects of Hurricane Katrina without any natural disas- ter. 

California produces more than four billion pounds of hazardous waste every year. at’s enough to ll 727 Olympic-sized pools. At least one hundred thousand business- es—from aerospace, computer, and chemical companies, to metal shredders, gas sta- tions, plating companies, and dry cleaners—contribute to this toxic stream. It has to go somewhere.