FRIDAY GRAPH: THE POOR IN AMERICA ARE GETTING RICHER

Roger Kerr, New Zealand Business Roundtable Executive Director

How often have you heard the claim that incomes in the United States have been stagnant for “decades”?

The chart below from the Pew Economic Mobility Project shows otherwise.

It is true that the top 20 percent in the United States today earns more than the top 20 percent earned in 1970.  But comparing quintiles across time doesn’t tell us what happens to actual people.

The chart shows what happens when you compare the incomes of parents (1967-71) with those of their children (1995-2002): The children of all earners except those in the top 20 percent saw their incomes improve over those of their parents. The children of earners starting in the bottom 20 percent saw the biggest increase over their parents’ incomes.

This excellent paper The Inequity of the Progressive Income Tax sheds more light on this issue.  The author, Kip Hagopian, writes:

In addition to America’s substantial superiority…

View original post 319 more words

2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. alecceckert
    May 12, 2015 @ 10:57:46

    http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2014/10/09/for-most-workers-real-wages-have-barely-budged-for-decades/

    The chart you have re-linked above misrepresents the economic reality, although I am not sure exactly why. It is most likely due to the data used.

    The study I have linked above uses info directly from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, and tells a vastly different story.

    Like

    Reply

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