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Jeff Meli Michael Gapen

The Flip Side: Episode 6

Jeff Meli in conversation with Michael Gapen

Did the US corporate tax cut stimulate the economy?

To subscribe to The Flip Side podcast series, please visit:

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At the end of 2017, US President Trump signed the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act into law. For corporations, this meant a significant reduction in the tax rate from 35% to 21%, which lawmakers claimed would boost business investment domestically, bring cash held overseas back to the US and create jobs. The question is, did the tax cut achieve all it set out to, and as a result stimulate the U.S. economy?


And while the numbers show increased structural investment, a sharp decline in corporate inversions, repatriation of cash previously held overseas, and a reduction in corporate leverage, should these positive metrics truly be attributed to the tax cut? Or are they the result of other factors? Head of Research Jeff Meli and US Chief Economist Michael Gapen debate these questions in episode six of The Flip Side podcast series.

Authorised clients of Barclays Investment Bank can log in to Barclays Live to access a related report entitled US Special Report: Sustainable 3% growth: So you're telling me there's a chance....

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The Flip Side podcast 

This podcast series features lively debates between Barclays’ Research analysts on important topics facing economies and businesses around the globe.

Banking outlook: US tax reform fuelling M&A

Banking outlook: US tax reform fuelling M&A

Lowering the US corporate tax rate to 21% not only led to a spike in mergers and acquisitions, it changed how some deals are structured. Barclays' Head of M&A Structuring explains.

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About the analysts

Jeff Meli is Head of Research within the Investment Bank at Barclays. Jeff joined Barclays in 2005, as Head of US Credit Strategy Research. He later became Head of Credit Research, playing a key role in the expansion of the firm’s credit research franchise. He has taken on a number of other senior positions since then and was most recently Co-Head of FICC Research and Co-Head of Research before being named Head of Research globally.


Jeff has spearheaded the firm’s response to regulatory changes in Macro and Credit Research, as well as under MIFID II, representing the firm in conversations with regulators and as part of industry working groups. Previously, he worked at Deutsche Bank and JP Morgan, with a focus on structured credit. Jeff has a PhD in Finance from the University of Chicago and an AB in Mathematics from Princeton.

Michael Gapen is a Managing Director and Head of US Economics Research at Barclays. Based in New York, he is responsible for the firm’s outlook for the US economy and, in particular, US monetary policy and the impact of financial markets on the economy. Prior to taking on this role, Michael was a Senior US Economist and, following his appointment as Asset Allocation Strategist in January 2012, he took on additional responsibility for forming the firm’s asset allocation views and marketing them to clients.


Michael joined Barclays in 2010 from the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve, where he was a Section Chief responsible for monetary and financial market analysis. In that capacity, he assisted the Board and the FOMC in the formulation of monetary policy and the Federal Reserve’s response to the financial crisis.


Prior to that, he served as an Economist with the International Monetary Fund. He has also taught Finance and Economics at institutions including Kelly School of Business and Department of Economics at Indiana University, Mendoza College of Business at the University of Notre Dame, and the Department of Economics at Johns Hopkins University. Michael holds a Ph.D. in Economics from the Department of Economics at Indiana University.

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