Income Inequality in U.S. Reaches Record High

Wednesday, September 29, 2010
The gap between rich and poor Americans grew wider than ever last year, according to new data from the U.S. Census Bureau.
Those making more than $100,000 annually (the top 20% of the population) received 49.4% of all income generated in 2009, while those living below the poverty line (the bottom 20%) earned only 3.4%. This disparity amounted to a ratio of 14.5-to-1, the greatest on record and almost double what it was in 1968 (7.69-to-1).
According to figures compiled by economist Emmanuel Saez, in 2008 the richest 1% of the population gained 21% of the nation’s income.
The rich-poor gap was most noticeable in the states of New York, Connecticut and Texas and in the cities of New York, Miami, Los Angeles, Boston and Atlanta.
Alaska, Utah, Wyoming, Idaho and Hawaii had the smallest income gaps.
-Noel Brinkerhoff
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Rich-Poor Income Gap Widens (by Noel Brinkerhoff, AllGov)


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