Home Economy Evidence from a new data source: Economics

Evidence from a new data source: Economics

Growing rich and poor disparities can have a corrosive effect on inequality of opportunity as they crystallize over time and turn into persistent disparities over generations. This column uses new data compiled from Italian inheritance tax records to show that the top 1% (half a million individuals) wealth share has increased from 16% in 1995 to 22% in 2016 and This rate rose to the top 0.01% (the 5,000 richest adults) nearly tripled from 1.8% to 5%. In contrast, the poorest 50% found their average net worth to decline by 80% over the same period. The data also show the growing role of inheritance and gifts among vivos as a share of national income, as well as their growing concentration at the highest level.



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