The Rich Really Have Gotten Richer

Monday, February 02, 2009

During the first six years of the administration of President George W. Bush, the 400 richest Americans saw their average income double to $263.3 million, thanks, in part,  to the fact that their tax rate dropped by a third to 17.2%. The biggest gains for the top 400 came as a result of the 2003 cut in the capital gains tax rate to 15%. Capital gains account for 63% of the income for the super-wealthy. In 2006, the richest 400 Americans accounted for 1.31% of the nation’s total income and 1.77% of income taxes paid. President Barack Obama has said that he would eventually like to raise the capital gains rate to 20% for Americans making more than $250,000 a year, while eliminating capital gains taxes for small businesses.

A Rich Income in ’06 was $263 Million (by Lynnley Browning, New York Times)


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