The chasm between the wealthiest Americans and the rest of the population is worse than it’s been since the Gilded Age.
From the AP:
The very wealthiest Americans earned more than 19 percent of the country’s household income last year—their biggest share since 1928, the year before the stock market crash. And the top 10 percent captured a record 48.2 percent of total earnings last year.
Read the study here.
Highlights from the report (their words, by emphasis):
- From 2009 to 2012, average real income per family grew modestly by 6.0% .
- Most of the gains happened in the last year when average incomes grew by 4.6% from 2011 to 2012.
- However, the gains were very uneven. Top 1% incomes grew by 1.4% while bottom 99% incomes grew only by 0.4% from 2009 to 2012.
- Hence, the top 1% captured 95% of the income gains in the first three years of the recovery. From 2009 to 2010, top 1% grew fast and then stagnated from 2010 to 2011. Bottom 99% stagnated both from 2009 to 2010 and from 2010 to 2011. In 2012, top 1% incomes increased sharply by 19.6% while bottom 99% incomes grew only by 1.0%. In sum, top 1% incomes are close to full recovery while bottom 99% incomes have hardly started to recover.