CRF Blog

The problem of wealth inequality

by Bill Hayes

Michael Hiltzik, a Los Angeles Times business columnist, argues that U.S. income inequality is bad, but wealth inequality is a bigger problem.

[Economists Emmanuel] Saez and [Gabriel] Zucman find that current sharp uptrend in wealth inequality is a reversal of nearly a half-century of “democratization of wealth,” from the 1930s through the late ’70s. At that point, the top 0.1% owned 7% of total U.S. household wealth. By 2012 that figure was 22%. Today their share of wealth is “almost as high as in the late 1920s.” And we know how that turned out. [more]