dreams, DINAs, and delusions

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Yves Smith describes the American dream:

A third of Americans think they'll be rich someday. More than half of 18-29 year olds think they will be.

Less than 5% actually make it. And many of those do it the old-fashioned way: they inherit it.

That's quite a caveat. Smith then asks, "how do Americans accumulate wealth?"

And how does that vary across income and wealth classes? How do the bottom 50% accumulate wealth, for instance, compared to the top 1%?

A huge aid to answering that question arrived last month. Gabriel Zucman, Emmanuel Saez, and Thomas Piketty (PSZ) released one of the most important pieces of economic research in the last century. Their Distributional National Accounts (DINAs) reveal the distribution of national income to different income classes, wealth classes, age groups, and genders (and potentially different races, etc. etc.).

20170106-incomeshare.png

20170106-wealthaccumulation.png

"Concentration of total wealth accrual is almost always far higher," Smith notes, "and has been rising faster, than concentration of income alone:"

The rich are getting richer, faster. It's an inequality picture more dire even than that depicted in the DINAs. And because wealth begets more wealth, it's a self-perpetuating picture.

We pay people for doing things, and we pay people for owning things. Increasingly, the latter.

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This page contains a single entry by cognitivedissident published on January 6, 2017 7:24 AM.

voter fraud: IOKIYAR was the previous entry in this blog.

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