12/16/2018

News

Measuring Income Inequality in the US

This brief discusses in depth the methodological issues of measuring income inequality in the US as discussed by Rose (2018). The primary issues concern different studies’ definitions of income, datasets, units of analysis, income measures (market incomes only; total cash income with government transfers; and posttax, posttransfer income), income adjustments for household size, and the […]

Read More

How Different Studies Measure Income Inequality in the US

Piketty and Saez (2003) found that income inequality rose substantially between 1979 and 2002 because the top 10 percent of the income distribution took 91 percent of the income growth during that period. As the real incomes of the top 10 percent soared, the incomes of the bottom 90 percent stagnated. Piketty and Saez’s findings […]

Read More

Many U.S. Financial Officers Think a Recession Will Hit Next Year

Almost half of U.S. chief financial officers believe a recession will strike the U.S. economy by the end of 2019, with the tight labor market and growing trade tensions driving economic jitters among corporate America. Additionally, more than 80% of U.S. CFOs think a recession will strike by the end of 2020, according to the […]

Site has paywall
Read More

More Evidence That Income Stagnation Is a Myth

A few weeks back, I wrote about a new study from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO). It convinced me that, although typical incomes are rising slowly, they are still rising and that, over long periods, the increases are significant. To cite one statistic from that column: Average inflation-adjusted household incomes for the middle fifth of […]

Read More

The Economic Forecast for 2019: Less Growth and More Uncertainty

The global economic outlook is shifting, which could lead to new turbulence in markets and Washington in 2019. The past year was marked by strong U.S. economic growth, supported by a burst of fiscal stimulus from federal tax cuts and spending increases. That, in turn, underpinned profit growth and the Federal Reserve’s decision to dial […]

Site has paywall
Read More

The Lifting Children and Families Out of Poverty Task Force Report

California has the highest number of children and highest percentage of children living in poverty of any state in the nation.1 In order to help address additional strategies, in 2017 the California legislature passed Assembly Bill 1520 (Chapter 415, Statutes of 2016) directing the California Department of Social Services to convene The Lifting Children and […]

Research & Studies
Read More

The Evolution of Retirement Incentives in the U.S.

Employment rates of older men and women in the U.S. have been rising for the past several decades. Over the same period, there have been significant changes in Social Security and private pensions, which may have contributed to this trend. In this study, we examine how the financial incentive to work at older ages has […]

Read More

The Distribution of Household Income, 2015

In 2015, average household income before accounting for means-tested transfers and federal taxes was $20,000 for the lowest quintile and $292,000 for the highest quintile. After transfers and taxes, those averages were $33,000 and $215,000.

Read More

The myth of stagnant incomes

Unless you’ve been hibernating in the Himalayas, you must know of the recent surge in economic inequality. It’s not just that the rich are getting richer. The rest of us — say politicians, pundits and scholars — are stagnating. The top 1 percent have grabbed most income gains, while average Americans are stuck in the […]

Read More

Improved Middle-Income Estimates by Pew Research, But More Improvements Needed

There are few issues, if any, more important than income and poverty. The most successful political jurisdictions, where national or sub national, are characterized by rising incomes and falling rates of poverty. A large and growing middle-class is key to that. But measuring the size and trend of the middle-class is easier said than done. […]

Read More

The functions of wealth: renters, owners and capitalists across Europe and the United States

Piketty (2017) argues in favor of a multidimensional and relational approach to the analysis of wealth inequality. Speci cally, he suggests that social classes should be ana- lyzed in terms of the power and production relations between social groups, not just the percentiles in statistical distributions into which various groups fall. We propose such a […]

Research & Studies
Read More

Owning your own home doesn’t make you rich. Owning somebody else’s does.

In the United States more than almost anywhere else, wealth and income are concentrated among business owners and landlords. And that club, blessed by capitalism, is becoming increasingly difficult to join. Business owners and landlords tend to be about four times as wealthy as the average American. That’s more than almost any other country included […]

Read More

Britain’s universal credit could yet be a success

THE GULF between principle and practice is often fatal for policies—and for political careers. Britain’s government faces a backlash over universal credit, a reform combining six welfare programmes into one. This was widely seen as a good idea about a decade ago. But a series of administrative failures, a senseless decision to make payments well […]

Read More

Why one of America’s richest states is also its poorest

If you were to ask most Americans which is the poorest state in the nation, they might say Alabama or Mississippi, with their low average incomes and concentrations of African-American poverty. In fact, the state with the largest share of people in poverty is California. As the most populous state, it also has by far […]

Read More

5 Myths about Income Inequality Debunked

The issue of economic inequality is all the rage these days. It encompasses numerous arguments about a wide range of topics. Let us review and rebut several common ones.

Read More