Here are the largest public companies taking payroll loans meant for small businesses

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Hundreds of millions of dollars of Paycheck Protection Program emergency funding has been claimed by large, publicly traded companies, new research published by Morgan Stanley shows.

In fact, the U.S. government has allocated at least $243.4 million of the total $349 billion to publicly traded companies, the firm said.

The PPP was designed to help the nation’s smallest, mom-and-pop shops keep employees on payroll and prevent mass layoffs across the country amid the coronavirus pandemic.

But the research shows that several of the companies that have received aid have market values well in excess of $100 million, including DMC Global ($405 million), Wave Life Sciences ($286 million) and Fiesta Restaurant Group ($189 million). Fiesta, which employs more than 10,000 people, according to its last reported annual number, received a PPP loan of $10 million, Morgan Stanley’s data showed.

At least 75 companies that have received the aid were publicly traded and received a combined $300 million in low-interest, taxpayer-backed loans, according to a separate report published by The Associated Press.

“I think you’ve seen some pretty shameful acts by some large companies to take advantage of the system,” said Howard Schultz, former Starbucks chairman and CEO. Instead, the government should act “as a backstop for the banks to give every small business and every independent restaurant a bridge to the vaccine. And that is the money and the resources to make it through.” – READ MORE

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