Am I bitter about the economy? Yes, and for good reason. In the midst of the US’s “jobless recovery,” the rich are getting richer, and the poor poorer. Per usual. If you need the charts and stats, check out this Business Insider article.
And what does Disney’s stock price mean for Cast Members? Well, if they’re earning enough money to support participation in the Employee stock purchase program mentioned on the WDW web site, then they can benefit just like any other investor. And I’m guessing that some of the higher-level Cast Members may have significant stock holdings. Disney has continued to pay dividends regularly, and will do so again next week. The current economy does seem to favor stocks that pay dividends, as many investors are strapped for cash, and might also be nervous about whether any stock will reliably retain value, after some of the market drops we’ve seen in recent years.
But after having done some research lately on what Cast Members are paid, and watching the ongoing union negotiations at Walt Disney World, I’m guessing most can’t afford to invest in stock. Listening to first-hand accounts from some Cast Members on the Mousetrapped video series produced by one of the Cast Member unions, I’m left with a bitter taste in my mouth.
If all goes as planned, this month I’ll be fortunate enough to set foot in Disney Parks on both coasts, due to a SoCal business trip next week, and my BFF’s WDW wedding the week after. I will enjoy the hell out of this double-dose Disney fix. But I can’t say it won’t bug me to think of the inequities of the situation, and I promise I’ll tip whomever I can, whenever I can.