Wages and Benefits

For the past few years, some economists have claims that increases in income inequality are due to increased cost of employee benefits such as health insurance.  For instance, let’s say that health insurance cost $10,000 per worker.  Workers with a wage of $20,000 have total compensation of $30,000 including benefits, and workers with wages of…

Life Expectancy Inequality

Numerous media outlets and academic studies have demonstrated that in the last few decades, income inequality has grown. However, not only are poor Americans making relatively less money compared to their richer peers in recent years, but poor individuals also have not experienced the same survival gains as the rich. Louise Sheiner reports on a…

Who are the 1%?

Although executives and managers lead the way, in large part, the answer is doctors.  See the chart below. Sources: John Bakija, Williams College “Jobs and Income Growth of Top Earners and the Causes of Changing Income Inequality: Evidence from U.S. Tax Return Data.” November 2010, Working Paper. Hat tip: Mother Jones.  

Wage inequality

Many economists have noted that wage growth has not kept up with overall economic growth over the past few decades.  We observe widening wage inequality since the 1970s.  Are workers getting poorer relative to the owners of capital?  Is a communist revolution needed to equalize the playing field? Economist Martin Feldstein thinks not.   “Feldstein…

Closing the (Happiness) Inequality Gap

Income inequality has generally increased since the 1970s. Even for researchers who find that income inequality has Does this mean that happiness inequality has also increased? An NBER working paper by Betsey Stevenson and Justin Wolfers claims that this is not the case. Below is the a portion of the abstract. While there has been…