Canadian Social Research Links

Income and
Wealth Inequality

Sites de recherche sociale au Canada

Les inégalités des revenus
et des biens

Updated January 22, 2017
Page révisée le 22 janvier 2017



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Is there a growing wealth and income gap in Canada?

The Growing Gap project takes an in-depth and sustained look at one of the biggest challenges of our time: Worsening income and wealth inequality in Canada.

Growing Gap publications - reports, studies, commentary and fact sheets
NOTE : click the "More" link at the bottom of each list on the publications page to see a more complete collection.

Growing Gap News Releases & Updates

Growing Gap is an initiative of the
Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives

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Low income and inequality
- portal to all StatCan products on the subject of inequality
Source:
Statistics Canada

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From the Bank of Canada:

Inflation Calculator
The Inflation Calculator uses monthly consumer price index (CPI) data from 1914 to the present to show changes in the cost of a fixed "basket" of consumer purchases. These include food, shelter, furniture, clothing, transportation, and recreation.

Investment Calculator
The Investment Calculator shows the effects of inflation on investments and savings. This tool allows you to see what a current investment will be worth in the future based on different assumptions on the annual interest rate and the annual rate of inflation. You can also enter a dollar amount to see how much you would have to invest today to reach a specific target value in the future, based on different rates of interest and inflation.



Richard Wilkinson: How economic inequality harms societies
Filmed July 2011• Posted October 2011
Duration 16:55

We feel instinctively that societies with huge income gaps are somehow going wrong. Richard Wilkinson charts the hard data on economic inequality, and shows what gets worse when rich and poor are too far apart: real effects on health, lifespan, even such basic values as trust.

In "The Spirit Level," Richard Wilkinson charts data that proves societies that are more equal are healthier, happier societies.

Richard Wilkinson: Public health researcher (bio)
http://www.ted.com/speakers/richard_wilkinson.html

Related link:

The Money Masters - Infographic about the CEOs, the super-rich, and the rest of us.
Source:
ForensicAccounting.net


Income Inequality
- Special collection of links to HUNDREDS of NY Times articles about income inequality
http://topics.nytimes.com/top/reference/timestopics/subjects/i/income/income_inequality/index.html


From Democracy Watch

Corporate Responsibility Resources in Canada and elsewhere
- 75+ links organized under the following categories:
* Company Information Search Sites * General Corporate Activity Tracking Sites * Business Ethics and Ethical Investment Sites * Boycott Sites * Canadian Government Consumer Help Websites * Complain about Canadian Corporations violating OECD Guidelines * Complain About Your Bank, Trust, Insurance or Investment Company * Complain About Misleading Phone Calls from Businesses * Canadian Courts, Tribunals and Commissions and Rulings * Laws from Countries Around the World * Canadian Corporate Lobbyists Search Sites * Donations to Canadian and U.S. Political Parties and Candidates * Chemicals Released in Your Community in Canada * Media Accountability * Find Low-Cost Gasoline Across Canada

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Related Canadian Social Research Links page:

- Banks and Business Links:
http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/bookmrk3.htm

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A historical snapshot of inequality in Canada

http://goo.gl/Vm4XX
6 Jan 2012
Source:
Childcare Resource and Research Unit (CRRU)
http://www.childcarecanada.org

Economic Inequality
http://www.economicinequality.ca/

Economic inequality is a big subject, and a lot of energy from a lot of people is needed to create more equality. Our organization is creating opportunities for public discussion of the kinds of policies we need and the kinds of actions (by us and by others) that are required.


..

NOTE: The links below are organized in reverse chronological order, for the most part...

More Than Half of Americans Reportedly Have Less Than $1,000 to Their Name
http://www.esquire.com/news-politics/news/a41147/half-of-americans-less-than-1000/

Rich man, poor man: A closer look at Oxfam's inequality figures
Canadian statistics show we're getting richer, but that doesn't mean the income gap isn't growing

http://www.cbc.ca/news/business/oxfam-inequity-statistics-1.3937943
By Susan Noakes
January 16, 2017
A combination of static disposable incomes and rising costs has created a feeling among many middle-class Canadians that they are falling behind. Reports point out the declining quality of our jobs and that the top CEOs earn 193 times what the average worker earns. 2 richest Canadians have more money than 11 million combined. Oxfam tells us the wealth of two Canadian billionaires equals that of the 11 million least-wealthy Canadians, reinforcing the impression of vast inequality.
(...)
The group of organizations, under the banner group Oxfam International, published its report "An Economy for the 99%" ahead of the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.

An Economy for the 99% - Complete report
(in English / French / Spanish / Portuguese) PLUS summary and methodological notes:
http://policy-practice.oxfam.org.uk/publications/an-economy-for-the-99-its-time-to-build-a-human-economy-that-benefits-everyone-620170

Source:
CBC News
http://www.cbc.ca/news/

World Economic Forum
https://www.weforum.org/events/world-economic-forum-annual-meeting-2017

OXFAM International : The power of people against poverty
https://www.oxfam.org/

Sample content:

Most-read stories from Davos 2017 – Trump, Shakira, Jack Ma and more
https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2017/01/most-read-stories-davos-2017-trump-shakira-ma

Economic Growth and Social Inclusion:
Davos leaders agree: share more wealth, or face the consequences
https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2017/01/davos-leaders-agree-we-should-share-more-of-the-worlds-wealth-or-face-the-populist-consequences/

From Statistics Canada:

December 16, 2016
Canadian Megatrends: The fall and rise of Canada's top income earners
Abstract
http://www.statcan.gc.ca/daily-quotidien/161216/dq161216f-eng.htm
Canada's top 1% of income earners have seen their share of the total income pie shrink and grow several times over the last century. This month's issue of Canadian Megatrends takes a 10-decade look at the highest earners in society. http://www.statcan.gc.ca/daily-quotidien/161216/dq161216f-eng.htm
The article not only looks at the market income share of the highest earners, but also examines their income sources and the differences between the income of high earners and that of median earners by census metropolitan area.

Complete article - 3 pages
http://www.statcan.gc.ca/pub/11-630-x/11-630-x2016009-eng.htm
by Brian Murphy of StatCan

Income inequality is the elephant in the room this election:
http://rabble.ca/news/2015/09/income-inequality-elephant-room-this-election
By Paul Weinberg
September 16, 2015
The need to end the expansion of social inequality and the concentration of wealth of the 1% has gone missing in action in the 2015 federal election campaign trail.

National think-tank unveils platform to end inequality in Canada
http://www.childcarecanada.org/documents/child-care-news/15/09/national-think-tank-unveils-platform-end-inequality-canada
9 Sep 2015 | Canada

Income inequality measurement sensitivities (PDF - 2.6MB, 50 pages)
https://www.fraserinstitute.org/uploadedFiles/fraser-ca/Content/research-news/research/publications/income-inequality-measurement-sensitivities.pdf
By Christopher Sarlo, Jason Clemens and Joel Emes
July 2015

Source:
The Fraser Institute

https://www.fraserinstitute.org/

But there are problems with Fraser's methodology:
http://worthwhile.typepad.com/worthwhile_canadian_initi/2015/08/veall-fi.html

Related article:
http://ipolitics.ca/2015/07/30/fraser-institute-report-says-no-income-inequality-crisis-in-canada/

New from
Statistics Canada
:
http://www.statcan.gc.ca/start-debut-eng.html

Changes in wealth across the income distribution, 1999 to 2012
HTML : http://www.statcan.gc.ca/pub/75-006-x/2015001/article/14194-eng.htm
PDF (464K, 12 pages) : http://www.statcan.gc.ca/pub/75-006-x/2015001/article/14194-eng.pdf
June 3, 2015
This article examines changes in the wealth of Canadian families over the period 1999 to 2012, with a particular focus on changes across income quintiles. The paper also examines changes in the concentration of wealth across income quintiles, as well as the characteristics of families with low income and no wealth.

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Changes in debt and assets of Canadian families, 1999 to 2012
April 29,2015
HTML : http://www.statcan.gc.ca/pub/75-006-x/2015001/article/14167-eng.htm
PDF (517KB, 16 pages) : http://www.statcan.gc.ca/pub/75-006-x/2015001/article/14167-eng.pdf
This paper examines changes in debt, assets and net worth among Canadian families with debt over the period 1999 to 2012, by selected family characteristics. It also examines the extent to which two key ratios of indebtedness, the debt-to-income ratio and the debt-to-asset ratio, varied over the period.

Last-minute notice:
Community conversation with authors Richard Wilkinson and Kate Pickett

Concordia University (Montreal), June 26 from 2:30 to 5:30pm
Discussion of their book, The Spirit Level, and how the widening income inequality gap is detrimental to the health of Canadians and their families. We will also discuss the psychological effects of inequality. Complimentary food and refreshments.
NOTE : There is no cost, but tickets must be reserved at the link below:
http://inrich2015.ticketleap.com
[Sorry about the last-minute alert - the organizing group just asked me today to promote this event for tomorrow...]

The truth about Canada’s low-income benefits: They work
http://www.theglobeandmail.com/globe-debate/the-truth-about-canadas-low-income-benefits-they-work/article24042813/
By Mark Stabile and Lauren Jones
April 21, 2015
Child poverty and inequality continues to be an important problem in the industrialized world. To help combat this, many industrialized countries use income transfers administered through the tax system, which aim to reduce poverty and inequality, and improve social mobility for children. In Canada, the Canada Child Tax Benefit (CCTB) [ http://www.cra-arc.gc.ca/cctb/ ] and National Child Benefit (NCB) [ http://www.nationalchildbenefit.ca/eng/home.shtml ] are our main transfer programs.
(...)
But how do families actually use this money to help their children?
(...)
In recent research with Kevin Milligan, we investigated how families who receive child benefits in Canada actually spend the next dollar of benefit income. Our results reveal some interesting patterns.
(...)
Over all, we’re starting to get a full picture of the effects of Canada’s National Child Benefit. It improves the lives of children, an effect that we can actually measure in terms of better school performance and improved health. It is being spent wisely by parents on both necessities for living and direct investments in education. It results in less drinking in smoking, not more. And it directly improves both poverty and inequality by transferring money from people who have more to those who have less. Not a bad combination for a single program.

---
Mark Stabile is the former Director of School of Public Policy, a Professor at the Rotman School and a fellow at the Martin Prosperity Institute, all at the University of Toronto.
Lauren Jones is a post-doctoral fellow at the Martin Prosperity Institute, University of Toronto.
---

Source:
Globe and Mail
http://www.theglobeandmail.com/

From the
Parkland Institute:

From Gap to Chasm: Alberta's Increasing Income Inequality
http://parklandinstitute.ca/research/summary/from_gap_to_chasm
April 20, 2015
The gap between the rich and the poor in Alberta is the widest in the country, and the disparity between those Albertans at the top of the income ladder and those at the bottom has been growing faster than in any other province, according to the findings of a new fact sheet written by public finance economist Greg Flanagan.

"Alberta is now the most unequal province in Canada, and the gap between those at the top and those at the bottom widened in Alberta over the past 20 years twice as much as the national average," says Flanagan. "Equally worrisome is the fact that because Alberta is the only province without a progressive taxation system, Alberta saw the least improvement in income equality after taxes."

Read the fact sheet:
http://s3-us-west-2.amazonaws.com/parkland-research-pdfs/fromgaptochasm.pdf

Read the media release:
http://parklandinstitute.ca/media/comments/albertas_income_inequality_the_worst_in_canada

Source:
Parkland Institute
[ http://parklandinstitute.ca/ ]

Great Gatsby v. Zero-Dollar Linda : Assessing the Relationship Between Income Inequality,
Social Mobility, and the Tax-Transfer System
(PDF - 4.1MB, 28 pages)
http://www.macdonaldlaurier.ca/files/pdf/MLISheikhGreatGatsbyPaper04-15-webready-V2.pdf
By Munir A. Sheikh
April 2015

Table of Contents:

Executive Summary
Sommaire
1 Introduction
2 The Great Gatsby Model
3 The Zero Dollar Linda Model
--- Poverty and Social Mobility
--- The Welfare Wall
--- High METRs
4 Policy Implications
5 Conclusions
Author’s Note
About the Author
Appendix: Empirical Analysis
References
Endnotes ..

Author Munir A. Sheikh is an Executive Fellow at the School of Public Policy at the University of Calgary. He recently served as a co-Commissioner of Ontario’s Social Assistance Review, and he is more broadly known as the former Chief Statistician of Canada who resigned from his post rather than rubber-stamp Stephen Harper's outrageous excuse for his cancellation of the long-form Census questionnaire a few years ago.

Source:
http://www.macdonaldlaurier.ca/

More MLI reports organized by date, 2012 to 2015
http://www.macdonaldlaurier.ca/papers-organized-by-date/

Research papers archive organized by topic
http://www.macdonaldlaurier.ca/mli-library/papers/

---

Related links:

Focus On Social Mobility, Not Income Inequality: Munir Sheikh On BNN (video, duration 4:57)
http://www.macdonaldlaurier.ca/focus-on-social-mobility-not-income-inequality-munir-sheikh-on-bnn/
NOTE : includes links to five related articles

Canadians Should Stop Worrying About Income Inequality (video, duration 86:30)
http://www.cpac.ca/en/programs/public-record/episodes/37736970/
The Macdonald-Laurier Institute hosts The Great Canadian Debates, a series of debates exploring some of the most compelling issues to Canadians. The first debate in the 2015 season asks the question: "Should we stop worrying about income inequality?"

Liberal MP Chrystia Freeland argues against the resolution and George Mason Law Professor Frank Buckley argues in favour.

Source:
Macdonald-Laurier Institute (MLI)
http://www.macdonaldlaurier.ca/
According to the "Support MLI" page of the Institute's website, "[T]he Macdonald-Laurier Institute is a registered charitable institution for educational purposes in Canada and the United States. It is Canada's only truly national public policy think tank based in Ottawa and it is rigorously independent and non-partisan, as symbolized by its name. Sir John A. Macdonald and Sir Wilfrid Laurier were two outstanding and long-serving former prime ministers who represent the best of Canada's distinguished political tradition."

According to Wikipedia, however, MLI's official mandate is "to make poor quality public policy unacceptable in Ottawa" and to promote freemarket conservatism.
(...)
The Institute professes to be strictly non-partisan and points to its name as a prime indicator of this intent. However, as a think tank directed by high-profile businesspeople with an emphasis on lowering business taxes, reducing government spending, privatizing the healthcare system and "working toward a common security perimeter with the United States", the institute's sympathies are on the right wing of the political spectrum.

Source:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Macdonald-Laurier_Institute

By Gilles : "...rigorously independent and non-partisan" MY ARSE.

Modern free trade era produced slower growth and greater income inequality
https://www.policyalternatives.ca/publications/reports/ascent-giants
February 9, 2015
This study looks at trade and investment trends, merger and acquisition activity, corporate wealth concentration, GDP growth, and other economic indicators over the past century in order to determine how trade and investment liberalization—the modern free trade era—has affected the Canadian economy. Notably, the study finds a direct link between corporate concentration during this period and today’s income and wealth inequality.

The timing of the study is important given the current government’s intensive policy of negotiating ever-more intrusive NAFTA-like trade and investment agreements with countries like Japan, the European Union, China and others

Complete report:

Ascent of Giants: NAFTA, Corporate Power and the Growing Income Gap (PDF - 1.4MB, 64 pages)
https://www.policyalternatives.ca/sites/default/files/uploads/publications/National%20Office/2015/02/Ascent_of_Giants.pdf

Source:
Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives

https://www.policyalternatives.ca/

The Wealth Gap: Perceptions and Misconceptions in Canada (PDF - 520KB, 14 pages)
http://www.broadbentinstitute.ca/sites/default/files/The_Wealth_Gap.pdf
In a new nationwide survey among 3,000 Canadians conducted by Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Canada for the Broadbent Institute, Canadians were asked about their perceptions of inequality and the distribution of wealth in Canada. The findings demonstrate that Canadians vastly underestimate how skewed the distribution of wealth actually is and think there should be a much more equitable distribution.

Meanwhile, a large majority of Canadians believe income inequality has worsened in the last decade, and believe the government can — and should — do something to reduce the gap between rich and poor.

Video:
Wealth Inequality in Canada
(duration 4:13)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zBkBiv5ZD7s
Narrated by Ed Broadbent

Source:
Broadbent Institute
http://www.broadbentinstitute.ca/

From TVO:
[ http://tvo.org/ ]

The Agenda with Steve Paikin: Canada's Income Gap (video, duration 19:38)
http://tvo.org/video/209196/canadas-income-gap
December 03, 2014
TD Economics has released a report (see below) showing the top earners in Canada are getting richer while income growth for the middle earners is virtually stagnant. And, while the numbers aren't as stark as the U.S., social mobility is not achievable as it once was. The Agenda talks to economists about this growing trend.

Armine Yalnizyan talks income inequality in Canada on TVO's The Agenda
https://www.policyalternatives.ca/newsroom/updates/armine-yalnizyan-talks-income-inequality-canada-tvos-agenda
When it comes to growing income inequality and a squeezed middle class, it's often said that Canada has it better than the US. That doesn't mean we aren't faced by troubling trends here. Whose job is it to fight inequality?

In a short but profound discussion on TVO's The Agenda with Steve Paikin, Craig Alexander (Chief Economist of TD Bank) and CCPA's Senior Economist Armine Yalnizyan talk about why Canada has done better than the U.S., why the factors that have led to a better result here are playing themselves out, what the future likely holds and what we can do about these trends. Food for thought about one of the most inconvenient truths of our era.

---------------------------------------------

The TD Economics Special Report:

The Case For Leaning Against Income Inequality In Canada (PDF - 497KB, 13 pages)
http://www.td.com/document/PDF/economics/special/income_inequality.pdf
By Craig Alexander and Francis Fong
November 24, 2014

Source:
TD Economics
http://www.td.com/economics/

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Related links

Inequality bad for economy (video, duration 7:10)
http://www.cbc.ca/player/News/TV+Shows/The+Exchange+with+Amanda+Lang/ID/2614515463/
Nov 24, 2014
TD Bank’s Craig Alexander explains why Canada is becoming more unequal and why it’s bad for our economy.

Source:
The Exchange with Amanda Lang
http://www.cbc.ca/player/News/TV+Shows/The+Exchange+with+Amanda+Lang/

---

Canada becomes more unequal, but good policies could halt that: TD Bank
Study says inequality hurts the economy, but boosting productivity and adjusting taxes could help

http://www.cbc.ca/news/business/canada-becomes-more-unequal-but-good-policies-could-halt-that-td-bank-1.2847027
Governments should adjust taxes and transfer policies to make Canadian incomes more equal, because it’s better for the economy in the long run, says a new study by TD Bank. The study, titled The Case for Leaning Against Income Inequality in Canada, points out that technology, globalization and the wider gap between rich and poor in the U.S. are all working to increase inequality here.

But author Craig Alexander says rising inequality is bad for the economy – both because it leaves lower income people with less to spend and because it stalls opportunity for children and youth.

Source:
CBC

http://www.cbc.ca/

Less wage discrimination for women, aboriginals, and visible minorities in public sector, not higher salaries overall: study
https://policyalternatives.ca/newsroom/news-releases/less-wage-discrimination-women-aboriginals-and-visible-minorities-public
October 29, 2014
OTTAWA—Women, aboriginal workers, and visible minority workers experience less wage discrimination in the public sector than in the private sector, says a study released today by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA).

Narrowing the Gap:
The Difference That Public Sector Wages Make
(PDF - 730K, 30 pages)
https://www.policyalternatives.ca/sites/default/files/uploads/publications/National%20Office/2014/10/Narrowing_the_Gap.pdf
By Kate McInturff and Paul Tulloch
This study compares the wages of full-time public and private sector workers and finds significant gaps in the wages of women, aboriginal workers, and visible minority workers—and that those gaps are bigger in the private sector in every instance.

Table of contents:
* Introduction
* The Gender Gap
* The Education Gap
* The Discrimination Gap
* The Bottom Line
* Appendices
* Notes

Source:
Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives
https://policyalternatives.ca

In the long view, inequality seems unimportant
http://ottawacitizen.com/news/world/watson-in-the-long-view-inequality-seems-unimportant
By William Watson
October 11, 2014
The OECD recently published a 274-page study called “How Was Life? Global Well-Being since 1820.” [ It’s not entirely clear why an organization of 34 rich countries is analyzing economic history]. But both the study and its interactive website are fascinating.
It’s good to be reminded from time to time — it would be better if we were reminded roughly hourly — just how much life for the great mass of people has improved in the last 200 years.
(...)
Seen in the historical perspective the OECD’s work provides, inequality means that a few people now have astronomically more than past generations while most of the rest of us have only humongously more. Yet some observers are now so obsessed with inequality they would overturn the social system that has generated such unprecedented well-being. History will weep if we let them.

Source:
Ottawa Citizen

http://ottawacitizen.com/

---

From the
Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD):

How Was Life? Global Well-Being since 1820
http://www.oecd-ilibrary.org/economics/how-was-life_9789264214262-en
October 2, 214
How was life in 1820, and how has it improved since then? What are the long-term trends in global well-being? Views on social progress since the Industrial Revolution are largely based on historical national accounting in the tradition of Kuznets and Maddison. But trends in real GDP per capita may not fully re­flect changes in other dimensions of well-being such as life expectancy, education, personal security or gender inequality. Looking at these indicators usually reveals a more equal world than the picture given by incomes alone, but has this always been the case? The new report How Was Life? aims to fill this gap.

Table of Contents:
* Foreword
* Preface
* Readers' Guide
* Executive summary
* Global well-being since 1820
* Demographic trends since 1820
* GDP per capita since 1820
* Real wages since 1820
* Education since 1820
* Life expectancy since 1820
* Human height since 1820
* Personal security since 1820
* Political institutions since 1820
* Environmental quality since 1820
* Income inequality since 1820
* Gender inequality since 1820
* A composite view of well-being since 1820

Related OECD links:

How's Life 2013 : Measuring Well-Being
http://www.oecd.org/statistics/howslife.htm
November 2013
Every person aspires to a good life. But what does “a good or a better life” mean? The second edition of How’s Life? paints a comprehensive picture of well-being in OECD countries and other major economies, by looking at people’s material living conditions and quality of life across the population. In addition, the report contains in-depth studies of four key cross-cutting issues in well-being that are particularly relevant: how has well-being evolved during the global economic and financial crisis?; how big are gender differences in well-being?; how can we assess well-being in the workplace?; and how to define and measure the sustainability of well-being over time.

http://www.oecd-ilibrary.org/economics/how-s-life-2013_9789264201392-en
- includes links to all chapters, country snapshots (including Canada), tables, charts and more

More OECD reports about Canada
http://www.oecd.org/canada

Source:
Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development

http://www.oecd.org/
The mission of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) is to promote policies that will improve the economic and social well-being of people around the world. The OECD provides a forum in which governments can work together to share experiences and seek solutions to common problems. We work with governments to understand what drives economic, social and environmental change.

---

But wait --- The OECD Disparaged??

The OECD has become a major world policy nag
http://business.financialpost.com/2014/10/08/william-watson-the-oecd-has-become-a-major-world-policy-nag/
By William Watson
(...)
... a foundational principle of economics is that there can be too much of a good thing. The OECD costs two-thirds of a billion Euros a year. Canada’s contribution to the base budget is almost 4%. The OECD has become a major world policy nag.

COMMENT (by Gilles)

...and by "nag", Watson means independent monitor and watchdog.
Wassup with this evidence-based public policy-making thing, anyway?

Well, the OECD library is teeming with reports showing that Canada could and should be doing better with respect to reducing the income and wealth gap between Canada's richest and poorest citizens. However, The Harper Government™ has chosen to ignore those reports and those of United Nations Rapporteurs on a number of issues, including indigenous peoples and housing. Given the ruling party's aversion to groups that critique its policies at every turn, it's surprising that Watson isn't calling for the OECD to be degraded and defeated...!

[Factoid : Mr. Watson has a long-standing relationship with Montreal's Institute for Research on Public Policy and the C.D. Howe Institute where he and his socially- and fiscally-conservative buddies keep churning out tomes of libertarian pontifications for the masses.]

---

- Go to the Government Social Research Links in Other Countries page:
http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/internat.htm

Taking the measure of Fat City: Ottawa affluent and troubled, report finds
http://ottawacitizen.com/news/local-news/taking-the-measure-of-fat-city-ottawa-affluent-and-troubled-report-finds
By Elizabeth Payne
October 7, 2014
Life in Fat City is not always easy, a new report on Ottawa’s community well-being suggests. The report (to be released Tuesday October 7 at 10:30 am), called Bridging the Gap [ http://goo.gl/r1A4ZF ], notes that Ottawa, with a large percentage of public sector workers, has the highest median income of any municipality in Canada and enjoys one of the lowest unemployment rates. But there is a dark side to the relative affluence. Low-income Ottawa residents spend more of their money on housing than people in other parts of the country, leaving less for necessities such as food and transportation. In addition, Ottawa has the lowest rate of “community belonging” in the province, suggesting a sense of isolation among many.

Source:
Ottawa Citizen

http://ottawacitizen.com/

Related links:

Coalition of Community Health and Resource Centres of Ottawa (CHRC)
http://www.coalitionottawa.ca/
CHRC) is a network of multi-service, community-based health and resource centres, which recognizes the importance of responding to the diversity of needs within local communities and pays particular attention to those members of the community who are most vulnerable and at risk.

Community Health and WellBeing
http://communityhealthandwellbeing.org/
Our Vision : The best possible health and wellbeing for everyone living in Ontario.

Community Health & Wellbeing is a project of the
Association of Ontario Health Centres (AOHC)
http://aohc.org/

Earlier report by the AOHC:

Measuring What Matters
How the Canadian Index of Wellbeing can improve quality of life in Ontario

http://issuu.com/aohc_acso/docs/2014-02-13_-_discussion-paper-final

---

- Go to the Ontario Municipal and Non-Governmental Sites (O-Z) page:
http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/onbkmrk4.htm

The Future of Inequality
https://www.broadbentinstitute.ca/en/blog/future-inequality
October 4, 2014
By Andrew Jackson
Best-selling author Thomas Piketty argues in his book, Capital in the Twenty First Century [ http://goo.gl/MnLGp5 ], that inequality is set to return to the extreme levels of the “Gilded Age” of the late nineteenth century when very large shares of income and wealth were concentrated in the hands of the super rich. And he is far from alone.

In a gloomy long-term prognostication, Policy Challenges for the Next Fifty Years [ http://goo.gl/QdgWP5 ], the OECD*, the major think-tank of the advanced economies, anticipates that the incomes of those at the top will continue to grow much more rapidly than those at the middle and bottom.

[ * OECD = Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development ]

Source:
The Broadbent Blog

https://www.broadbentinstitute.ca/en/blog/

The Broadbent Institute
https://www.broadbentinstitute.ca/en/

Who Earns What?
http://www.macleans.ca/tag/who-earns-what/
September 27, 2014

Selected content:

* Who earns what : Global CEO-to-worker pay ratios
* How many average workers’ salaries would it take to pay an average CEO salary?
* Who earns what, from cradle to grave
* Who earns what : Canada's highest-paid women
* Who earned more : Eugenie Bouchard or Milos Raonic?
* Who earns what : Canadian jobs from eh to zed
* Who earns what : a sample of coffeeshop starting wages
* more...

Did YOU know that in Vancouver, the title of "Asphalt Raker" is worth $53,508 per year?
(Presumably after several years of perfecting their asphalt-raking techniques...)

[ Disclaimer : To all asphalt rakers in Vancouver, I apologize. But really, eh.]

Source:
macleans.ca
http://www.macleans.ca/

Canada's inequality growing: Stats Can
The gap between rich and poor is widening in Canada, a report that looks at wealth found.
http://www.thestar.com/business/personal_finance/investing/2014/09/11/rich_gaining_more_wealth_study_shows.html
By Dana Flavelle
September 11, 2014
[SPOILER : This is one of those "Extra-extra-read-all-about-it-:- dog bites man!" articles...]
The rich are getting richer and the poor are getting poorer in Canada, a new analysis of
data by an Ottawa-based think tank shows.
The study found that, much like the income gap, Canada’s wealth gap is also widening, the Broadbent Institute said in a statement Thursday.
(...)
The top 10 per cent of Canadians have seen their median net worth grow by 42 per cent since 2005 to $2.1 million in 2012, the study found. Meanwhile, the bottom 10 per cent of Canadians saw their median net worth shrink by 150 per cent. In 2012, their debts outweighed their assets by $5,100. That was worse than in 2005, when they owed $2,000 more than they owned, the study said.

---------------------------------------------

From the
Broadbent Institute:

HAVES AND HAVE-NOTS:
Deep and persistent wealth inequality in Canada
(PDF - 398K, 16 pages)
https://www.broadbentinstitute.ca/sites/default/files/have-havenots.pdf
September 2014
• The top 10% of Canadians accounted for almost half (47.9%) of all wealth in 2012.
• In 2012, the bottom 30% of Canadians accounted for less than 1% of all wealth; the bottom 50% combined controlled less than 6%.
---
Source of the data in this report : "...new Statistics Canada data released to the Broadbent Institute."
(From the Intro to the report)
---
TIP :
See "Endnotes" (pp. 11-12) for links to six related studies from other sources.
---

Three graphs that show Canada's deep and persistent wealth inequality*
http://www.pressprogress.ca/en/post/3-graphs-show-canadas-deep-and-persistent-wealth-inequality
September 11, 2014
Here's what Canada's wealth inequality looks like in three graphs:
1. Distribution of wealth in Canada by decile, 20121
2. Distribution of financial assets (excluding pensions) by decile, 2012
3. Share of wealth for wealthiest 10% versus bottom half of Canadians, 2012
---
* NOTE : These three graphs are part of the HAVES AND HAVE-NOTS report.

Source:
Income Inequality
https://www.broadbentinstitute.ca/en/issue/income-inequality

Income Inequality is a project of the
Broadbent Institute
https://www.broadbentinstitute.ca/
The Broadbent Institute is an independent, non-partisan organization championing progressive change through the promotion of democracy, equality, and sustainability and the training of a new generation of leaders.

---------------------------------------------

Statistics Canada reports and tables on
Income, pensions, spending and wealth
http://www5.statcan.gc.ca/subject-sujet/subtheme-soustheme.action?pid=3868&id=3874&lang=eng&more=0

From the OECD iLibrary:
[ http://www.oecd-ilibrary.org/ ]

Can Increasing Inequality Be a Steady State?
http://www.oecd-ilibrary.org/economics/can-increasing-inequality-be-a-steady-state_5jz2bxc80xq6-en
By Lars Osberg (Dalhousie University)
18 June 2014
NOTE : You can access this 51-page report as a PDF file (924K) or read it online.
Click the link above, then select the format that you prefer under " Click to Access: PDF / READ "

----------------------------------

From PressProgress:

Rising income inequality the "new normal": study
http://www.pressprogress.ca/en/post/rising-income-inequality-new-normal-study
News Release
July 24, 2014
Increasing levels of economic inequality are the “new normal” and we can expect them to get worse, not better. That’s the key takeaway from a recent study (See above, OECD iLibrary link) on long-run levels of income growth in Canada, Australia and the United States published by the OECD. The study highlights the explosive rise of incomes in the top 1% over the last 30 years, and their growing share as compared to the bottom 90% and 99%. Authored by eminent Canadian economist and Broadbent Fellow Lars Osberg, it argues “there is no natural upper bound to the real incomes of the top 1% and thus no natural upper bound to their income gap with median households.”

Related links:

* Thomas Piketty spells out why inequality exploded in the '80s
http://www.pressprogress.ca/en/post/listen-thomas-piketty-spells-out-why-inequality-exploded-80s
May 26, 2014

* Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development's dire
warning for Canada: income inequality will get a lot worse

http://www.pressprogress.ca/en/post/oecds-dire-warning-canada-income-inequality-will-get-lot-worse
July 13, 2014

* Canada's rich are richer than you think... 39% richer
http://www.pressprogress.ca/en/post/canadas-rich-are-richer-you-think-39-richer
June 17, 2014

Source:
PressProgress
http://www.pressprogress.ca/

Six charts that show why Alberta is the "most unequal province in Canada"
http://www.pressprogress.ca/en/post/6-charts-show-why-alberta-most-unequal-province-canada
May 21, 2014
If you want to know why "Alberta is now by far the most unequal province in Canada," a report* released Wednesday by the Parkland Institute sums it up.

"Due to exceptional increases in income for the richest 1% of Albertans, while the incomes of the rest of the population have virtually stagnated, Alberta is now the most unequal province in the country," the report concludes. "These changes coincided and are closely associated with the declining strength of unions in the province."

Click the link above for six charts that show what's going on in Alberta, and the relationship between unions and growing inequality.

Source:
PressProgress

http://www.pressprogress.ca/

---

* The Parkland Institute report:

On the Job:
Why Unions Matter in Alberta
(PDF - 732K, 58 pages)
http://parklandinstitute.ca/research/summary/on_the_job
By David Campanella, Bob Barnetson and Angella MacEwen

Executive Summary
http://parklandinstitute.ca/research/summary/on_the_job

Media Release
http://parklandinstitute.ca/media/comments/unions_critical_to_well_being_of_all_albertans_new_study
May 21, 2014

---

- Go to the Alberta Links page:
http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/abkmrk.htm

- Go to the Union Links page:
http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/unionbkmrk.htm

Hennessy‘s Index for May 2014:
Middle Class Angst

https://www.policyalternatives.ca/publications/facts-infographics/hennessy%E2%80%98s-index-may-2014
May 5, 2014
Hennessy’s Index is a monthly listing of numbers, written by the CCPA's Trish Hennessy, about Canada and its place in the world.
NOTE : Each of the items in Hennesssy's Index contains a link to the source information.
Click the link above for links to all items and their sources.

47
Percentage of Canadians who self-identify as middle class, down from almost 70 per cent in 2002.

5
Percentage increase in the market income of the richest 20 per cent of Canadian households in 2011 compared to 2006.

6
Percentage drop in the market income of the poorest 20 per cent of Canadian households in 2011 compared to 2006.

59
Percentage increase in the number of Canadians who were working for the minimum wage in 2012 compared to 2006.

32
Share of income gains from economic growth that Canada’s richest 1 per cent enjoyed between 1997 and 2007.

165
Percentage of Canadians’ household incomes that was taken up by household debt in 2012. That amount of household debt is worse than in the U.S. or U.K.

1
Canada tops the list of countries with the worst (that is, highest) price-to-rent ratio - an indicator some economists interpret as having an overvalued housing market.

11
Percentage of Canadians working in the private sector who are covered by a traditional (defined benefit) pension plan (down from 28.6 per cent in 1982)

53
Percentage of Canadians who think Canada is in some kind of recession.

---

For earlier months of Hennessy's Index, visit:
http://policyalternatives.ca/index

---

Source:
Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA)
https://www.policyalternatives.ca/

---

- Go to the Income and Wealth Inequality Links page:
http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/inequality.htm

Canada's income gap among fastest growing in the OECD
http://www.ctvnews.ca/business/canada-s-income-gap-among-fastest-growing-in-the-oecd-1.1799525
April 30, 2014
By Julian Beltrame
OTTAWA -- Canada is among the worst countries in the developed world in terms of the widening income gap between top earners and others in society, according to the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development. The analysis shows income inequality is on the rise in most developed economies, but the trend has particularly taken hold in the United States and Canada.

The OECD report shows the top one per cent of Canadian pre-tax income earners captured 37 per cent of the overall income growth between 1981 and 2012, and now swallow up 12.2 per cent of the country's income pie.

Source:
CTV News
http://www.ctvnews.ca/

----------------------------------

From the OECD:

Top earners capturing growing share of total income in many countries, says OECD
http://www.oecd.org/social/soc/top-earners-capturing-growing-share-of-total-income-in-many-countries.htm
30 April 2014
Press Release
The share of the richest 1% in total pre-tax income have increased in most OECD countries over the past three decades. This rise is the result of the top 1% capturing a disproportionate share of overall income growth over that timeframe: up to 37% in Canada and 47% in the United States.

FOCUS on
Top Incomes and Taxation in OECD Countries:
Was the crisis a game changer?
(PDF - 740K, 8 pages)
http://www.oecd.org/els/soc/OECD2014-FocusOnTopIncomes.pdf
May 2014
Excerpt from the concluding paragraph:
... a comprehensive policy strategy is needed to tackle overall inequality and promote equality of opportunities, which includes effective and well-targeted transfer policies and other social policies, as well as labour market and education policies.

Figures and Data in Excel (.xls) format
http://www.oecd.org/els/soc/OECD2014-FocusOnTopIncomes-Figures-Data.xlsx

More OECD work on Income Distribution and Poverty
http://www.oecd.org/social/inequality.htm

Source:
Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development

http://www.oecd.org/

The American Middle Class Is No Longer the World’s Richest
http://www.nytimes.com/2014/04/23/upshot/the-american-middle-class-is-no-longer-the-worlds-richest.html
By David Leonhardt and Kevin Quealy
April 22, 2014(...)
While the wealthiest Americans are outpacing many of their global peers, a New York Times analysis shows that across the lower- and middle-income tiers, citizens of other advanced countries have received considerably larger raises over the last three decades. After-tax middle-class incomes in Canada — substantially behind in 2000 — now appear to be higher than in the United States. The poor in much of Europe earn more than poor Americans. The numbers, based on surveys conducted over the past 35 years, offer some of the most detailed publicly available comparisons for different income groups in different countries over time. They suggest that most American families are paying a steep price for high and rising income inequality.

About the Data
http://www.nytimes.com/2014/04/23/upshot/about-the-data.html
The data in the above article comes from LIS, a group that maintains the Luxembourg Income Study Database.

Related link:

Luxembourg Income Study Database
LIS Cross-National Data Center in Luxembourg
http://www.lisdatacenter.org/
LIS is a cross-national data center which serves a global community of researchers, educators, and policy makers. LIS acquires datasets with income, wealth, employment, and demographic data from a large number of countries, harmonises them to enable cross-national comparisons, and makes them available for public use by providing registered users with remote access.

---

From the CBC:

Canada vs. U.S. middle class: What the New York Times missed:
'It's just one data set,' an economist says
http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/canada-vs-u-s-middle-class-what-the-new-york-times-missed-1.2621147
By Mark Gollom
April 25, 2014
A New York Times report based on income data compiled for the Luxembourg Income Study Database found that median per capita income for the U.S. in 2010 was $18,700 US. In Canada, the median per capita income was the same.

An analysis piece in the venerable New York Times declaring that Canada's middle class is now better off than the middle class in the U.S. has certainly generated headlines across this country. But not all analysts are convinced the report tells the whole story.

---

Why the rich get richer and the poor get poorer
Policy experts say middle-class squeezed as most of the gains go to the 1%
(video debate, duration 8:11)
http://www.cbc.ca/news/business/why-the-rich-get-richer-and-the-poor-get-poorer-1.2580263

Source:
CBC News

http://www.cbc.ca/news/

Government policies have widened Canada’s income gap
http://goo.gl/3K9RFA
By Andrew Jackson
March 17, 2014

The fact that income inequality in Canada today is significantly greater than it was 30 years ago is not in serious dispute. But there is much less agreement on the underlying causes.
It is important to look at trends in the “pre-distribution” of income by the market in the form of wages and salaries, and changes in the impact of government taxes and income transfer programs that redistribute market income from the more affluent to the less affluent.

Source:
Globe and Mail
http://www.theglobeandmail.com/

INEQUALITY IN CANADA: DRIVING FORCES, OUTCOMES AND POLICY
http://irpp.org/2014/02/24/inequality-in-canada-driving-forces-outcomes-and-policy/
Conference
February 24, 2014 – February 25, 2014
Delta Ottawa City Centre
101 Lyon Street
Ottawa
- includes dozens of Powerpoint presenrtations and audio recordings of presentations at the conference

New from The Daily
http://www.statcan.gc.ca/dai-quo/index-eng.htm

[Statistics Canada
http://www.statcan.gc.ca/start-debut-eng.html ]

---

February 25, 2014
Survey of Financial Security, 2012
http://www.statcan.gc.ca/daily-quotidien/140225/dq140225b-eng.htm
The median net worth of Canadian family units was $243,800 in 2012, up 44.5% from 2005.
Excerpt:
One way of looking at the distribution of net worth is to divide family units into five groups, from lowest net worth to highest, with each quintile representing 20% of all family units. There were differences in both the median net worth among the quintiles and the magnitude of the change over time. Those in the lowest quintile had a median net worth of $1,100 in 2012, while those in the highest quintile had a median net worth of almost $1.4 million.

- includes four tables:
Table 1 --- Total and median net worth by age and family type
Table 2 --- Assets, debts and net worth held by all family units in Canada
Table 3 --- Distribution and median net worth by quintile
Table 4 --- Debt per $100 of assets by age of major income recipient and family type

Related CANSIM tables:

Table 205-0001 : http://www5.statcan.gc.ca/cansim/a03?lang=eng&pattern=205-0001&p2=31
Table 205-0002 : http://www5.statcan.gc.ca/cansim/a03?lang=eng&pattern=205-0002&p2=31

Related links:

Canada’s family wealth gains look “fragile”
http://www.broadbentinstitute.ca/en/blog/canada%E2%80%99s-family-wealth-gains-look-%E2%80%9Cfragile%E2%80%9D
By Don Curran
February 26, 2014
(This article originally appeared in the Wall Street Journal.)
If you divide Canadian families up into fifths in terms of net worth, the lowest quintile had net assets of about 1,300 Canadian dollars ($1,170) in 1999. In 2012, it was actually below that; the overall worth of the lowest 20% of families declined 15.4% to C$1,100 by 2012, according to the “Survey of Financial Security” from Statistics Canada. It’s a stark indication Canada is not immune the drift toward economic inequality in evidence in many other economies around the world.

Also from
The Broadbent Blog:

New StatsCan wealth data points to persistent economic inequality
https://www.broadbentinstitute.ca/en/blog/new-statscan-wealth-data-points-persistent-income-inequality
By Andrew Jackson
February 25, 2014
(...) While Canadian’s net worth has increased significantly since 2005, mostly due to increases in housing prices, the real story is one of persistent economic inequality and rising debt. The top twenty percent of Canadians have over 67% of the net wealth. The bottom 60%, in contrast, have only 11.1% percent of net wealth. (...) Overall, the distribution is slightly better than in 2005, but remains very unequal.

Source:
The Broadbent Blog
http://www.broadbentinstitute.ca/en/blog

The Broadbent Institute
http://www.broadbentinstitute.ca/en

---

Canadian families’ net worth rises, but so does their debt
http://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business/economy/canadian-families-worth-more-but-owe-more-too-statscan/article17078187/
By Tavia Grant
February 2, 2014
A new study paints a picture of both rising net worth and swelling debt levels. All told, the median net worth of Canadian families climbed 44.5 per cent to $243,800 in 2012 from seven years earlier, adjusted for inflation, Statistics Canada’s survey of financial security shows. (Net worth reflects the amount family units would have if they sold their assets and paid all of their debt.)

Source:
The Globe and Mail
http://www.theglobeandmail.com/

New from the
Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives:

Wealth Inequality: Going from bad to (net) worth
http://behindthenumbers.ca/2014/02/26/wealth-inequality-going-from-bad-to-net-worth/
February 26, 2014
By David Macdonald
Yesterday, Statistics Canada [ http://www.statcan.gc.ca/ ] released its 2012 wealth survey (Survey of Financial Security : http://goo.gl/fgpT8z ). Two previous wealth surveys were published in 2005 and 1999 with a similar methodology. We often talk about income inequality, which examines what middle class and rich Canadians make in a year. However, wealth inequality examines middle class and rich Canadians’ net worth, including their house, RRSPs, savings, car, etc. If income inequality—where the top 20% of families get 43% of the income— is concerning, then wealth inequality should be downright shocking. The top 20% of families in Canada own 67% of all net wealth (although this is down slightly from the high of 69% of all wealth in 2005).

Related posts:

• The Financial Wealth of Canada’s Top 1% (October 24, 2011, by Marc Lee)
http://behindthenumbers.ca/2011/10/24/the-financial-wealth-of-canadas-top-1/

• Wealth and income in the top 1% ( October 20, 2011, by Marc Lee)
http://behindthenumbers.ca/2011/10/20/wealth-and-income-in-the-top-1/

• Dispelling Middle-class Myths (April 26, 2011, by Armine Yalnizyan)
http://behindthenumbers.ca/2011/04/26/dispelling-middle-class-myths/

• Toronto-Centre: Ground Zero for Canada’s Income Inequality Debate (November 19, 2013, by Trish Hennessy)
http://behindthenumbers.ca/2013/11/19/toronto-centre-ground-zero-for-canadas-income-inequality-debate/

• Atlantic Canada’s story of inequality (January 30, 2013, by Christine Saulnier)
http://behindthenumbers.ca/2013/01/30/atlantic-canadas-story-of-inequality/

Source:
Behind the Numbers : A Blog from the CCPA
http://behindthenumbers.ca/
Behind The Numbers delivers timely, progressive commentary on issues that affect Canadians, including the economy, poverty, inequality, climate change, budgets, taxes, public services, employment and much more.

Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA)
https://www.policyalternatives.ca/
The Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives is an independent, non-partisan research institute concerned with issues of social, economic and environmental justice

From Rob Rainer of
Basic Income Canada Network:

Income Inequality and Basic Income : Update
December 18, 2013

Just before the recent conclusion of the Second Session of the 41st Parliament, the House’s Finance Committee quietly released “Income Inequality in Canada: An Overview” [ PDF - http://goo.gl/rcjVXM ].

Yet while the report further validates income inequality’s steep rise in recent decades, the recommendations for remedy are, on the whole, exceptionally weak, even misguided. (Read journalist Carol Goar’s scathing critique : http://goo.gl/4Lyzo3 )

Meanwhile, on December 10th (Human Rights Day) the New York Times contained an article asking “Does Rising Inequality Make Us Hardhearted?”
[ http://goo.gl/gIejPF ]

Evidently, it does indeed. And this in turn helps understand, at least in part, how federal Industry Minister James Moore could rhetorically question why government should be responsible for the food security of children. (See journalist Thomas Walkom’s analysis [ http://goo.gl/1BEsMg ], in the wake of Minister Moore’s apology [ http://goo.gl/SD2tPp ]

Basic income [ http://www.thebigpush.net/faqs.html ] can at best make but a small contribution towards reducing income inequality. Basic income’s greater potential, however, is to help close the gap in opportunity inequality, by providing a firmer, more stable floor of income from which opportunity is within closer reach.

Indeed, it was the freedom-enhancing promise of basic income which so enthused Martin Luther King Jr. Commenting on it he said: “A host of positive psychological changes inevitably will result from widespread economic security. The dignity of the individual will flourish when the decisions concerning his life are in his own hands, when he has the assurance that his income is stable and certain, and when he knows that he has the means to seek self-improvement.”

Happily, the idea of basic income appears to be catching on worldwide, for example witness sizeable citizen support movements in Europe. See also another New York Times article from December 10th, profiling how basic income is gaining favour with some American libertarians (Rethinking the Idea of a Basic Income for All : http://goo.gl/r8qQqf ).

The BIG Push campaign [ http://www.thebigpush.net/ ] was founded in April 2013 to secure a Basic Income Guarantee for Canadians. Find out more by visiting our web site. Follow the campaign via Twitter. Please consider getting involved. And this Holiday Season, please consider investing in this historic push for income security in Canada. Thank you.

Encouraging sign of national support for basic income
A recent national survey [ Sept/Oct 2013, PDF : http://goo.gl/EDpnjl ] for The Trudeau Foundation, by the Environics Institute for Survey Research, found that 46% of Canadians are in favour of a "guaranteed annual income" (i.e., basic income)...

By Rob Rainer
Director, The BIG Push

http://www.thebigpush.net/

On Twitter: @Push_for_BIG

Basic Income Canada Network
http://biencanada.ca/

Bien Canada is the Canadian affiliate of Basic Income Earth Network:
http://www.basicincome.org/

Related infographic:

The Canadian Welfare System vs Guaranteed Livable Income (PDF - 721K, 1 page)
http://www.cpj.ca/sites/default/files/docs/files/GLI_Infographic_CPJ.pdf
The case for a Guaranteed Income:
Lifting People from poverty : Fairly, Efficiently and Effectively

... comparing and contrasting administration, work incentitves &disincentives, adequacy of incomes and program effectivenness
Source:
Citizens for Public Justice
http://www.cpj.ca/

From the
House of Commons Standing Committee on Finance:

House Finance Committee Releases Report on Income Inequality
http://www.parl.gc.ca/HousePublications/Publication.aspx?DocId=6382538&Language=e&Mode=1&Parl=41&Ses=2
December 10, 2013
Today, the House of Commons Standing Committee on Finance released a report entitled Income Inequality in Canada: An Overview. The report contains 24 recommendations pertaining to equality of opportunity, First Nations, education, newcomers, the tax system, financial regulations, labour markets and government supports. The study of income inequality in Canada by the Finance Committee was based on a motion (M-315) introduced by Mr. Scott Brison, Honourable Member of Parliament for Kings-Hants, and adopted in the House of Commons on June 13, 2012.

Complete report:

Income Inequality in Canada : An Overview (PDF - 1.3MB, 82 pages)
http://www.parl.gc.ca/Content/HOC/Committee/412/FINA/Reports/RP6380060/412_FINA_Rpt03_PDF/412_FINA_Rpt03-e.pdf
Report of the Standing Committee on Finance

41st Parliament, Second Session
James Rajotte, Chair
December 2013

Contents:

INCOME INEQUALITY IN CANADA: AN OVERVIEW
CHAPTER ONE: INTRODUCTION
CHAPTER TWO: MEASUREMENT OF INCOME INEQUALITY AND ECONOMIC DISPARITY IN CANADA
A. Background
B. Witness Views
CHAPTER THREE: POSSIBLE REASONS FOR INCOME INEQUALITY IN CANADA
A. Background
B. Witness Views
CHAPTER FOUR: POTENTIAL IMPACTS OF INCOME INEQUALITY IN CANADA
A. Background
B. Witness Views
CHAPTER FIVE: WITNESS VIEWS ON REDUCING INCOME INEQUALITY AND ITS IMPACTS IN CANADA
A. Federal Tax System
B. Federal Transfers to the Provinces/Territories
C. Employment Factors
D. Education
E. Health
F. Specific Groups
CHAPTER SIX: COMMITTEE RECOMMENDATIONS

APPENDIX A — PERSONAL INCOME TAXATION AND SUPPORT IN CANADA
Taxable Income and Tax Rates
Income Support
A. Federal Benefits in the Income Tax Act
B. Federal Benefits Not Provided Through the Tax System
C. Federal Transfers to the Provinces/Territories
APPENDIX B: LIST OF WITNESSES
APPENDIX C: LIST OF BRIEFS
REQUEST FOR GOVERNMENT RESPONSE
SUPPLEMENTARY OPINION OF THE NEW DEMOCRATIC PARTY OF CANADA
SUPPLEMENTARY OPINION OF THE LIBERAL PARTY OF CANADA

Source:
House of Commons Standing Committee on Finance
http://www.parl.gc.ca/committeebusiness/CommitteeHome.aspx?Cmte=FINA&Language=E&Mode=1&Parl=41&Ses=2

---

Related links:

From
Citizens for Public Justice:

House of Commons income inequality report fails poor Canadians
http://www.cpj.ca/content/house-commons-income-inequality-report-fails-poor-canadians
December 11, 2013
OTTAWA– A report on income inequality released by the House of Commons’ Finance Committee yesterday [see the link above] doesn’t do nearly enough to address the needs of low-income Canadians, says national faith-based organization Citizens for Public Justice (CPJ).

According to CPJ’s Making Ends Meet report, released today, low-income families are struggling to keep up with the rising cost of living. Making Ends Meet is the final report in CPJ’s Poverty Trends Scorecard series and notes that since the 2008-09 recession, the average price of goods and services has risen 6.7 per cent. Meanwhile, the average after-tax income for the poorest 20 per cent of households fell by 1.3 per cent over that same period. Many low-income families are turning to food banks, shelters, and credit cards to get by.
(...)

The Finance Committee’s report, quietly released hours before the House of Commons rose for an early Christmas break, contains 24 recommendations on issues ranging from labour markets to education.

Complete report:

Making Ends Meet (PDF - 2.1MB, 21 pages)
http://www.cpj.ca/sites/default/files/docs/files/CPJ-MakingEndsMeetreportweb.pdf
December 2013
This report highlights how low-income Canadians spent less money on food (down 7.5 per cent), health and personal care (down 5.5 per cent), and clothing (including diapers) (down 7.9 per cent) in 2011 than in 2010.

Source:
Poverty Trends Scorecard
http://www.cpj.ca/poverty-trends-scorecard
CPJ's Poverty Trends Scorecard is a four-part series of in-depth reports on poverty in Canada being released in 2012 and 2013. Each report includes an overview and a series of stand-alone fact sheets, summarizing key trends through tables, charts, and text.

The four reports in the series are:

Making Ends Meet
http://www.cpj.ca/making-ends-meet-report
December 2013

Labour Market Trends
http://www.cpj.ca/labour-market-trends-report
July 2013

Poverty Trends Scorecard: Canada 2012
http://www.cpj.ca/poverty-trends-scorecard-canada-2012
(October 2012)

Income, Wealth, and Inequality
http://www.cpj.ca/income-wealth-and-inequality-report
(April 2013)

---

The Poverty Trends Scorecard is a project of
Citizens for Public Justice (CPJ)
http://www.cpj.ca/
Citizens for Public Justice is a member-driven, faith-based public policy organization and co-lead of Dignity for All: the campaign for a poverty-free Canada.

---

From the
Toronto Star:

Tories shrug off income equality : Tory-dominated finance committee
tables a vacuous report on income inequality as Parliament shuts down for Christmas.
http://www.thestar.com/opinion/commentary/2013/12/12/tories_shrug_off_income_equality_goar.html
By Carol Goar
December 12, 2013

In the final hours before Parliament adjourned for its eight-week Christmas recess, James Rajotte , chair of the finance committee, quietly tabled Income Equality in Canada: An Overview. A quick glance at the 69-page report shows why the Conservative MP waited until the last possible moment to release it, precluding parliamentary debate and minimizing public attention. It is a pathetic piece of work. It heaps praise on Prime Minister Stephen Harper for his regressive policies. It says nothing about lifting low-income Canadians out of poverty, nothing about tackling the desperate shortage of affordable housing in the country, nothing about increasing the Canada Child Tax Benefit, nothing about improving public pensions and nothing about shoring up the country’s deteriorating social programs.
(...)
As Rajotte presented the uninspired report to Parliament, he requested a “comprehensive response” from the government.
That shouldn’t be hard. A simple “thanks, boys” from the Prime Minister will fill the bill.

Source:
Toronto Star
http://www.thestar.com/

From Statistics Canada:

December 9, 2013
High-income trends among Canadian taxfilers, 2011
http://www.statcan.gc.ca/daily-quotidien/131209/dq131209b-eng.htm
High income tax filers received virtually the same share of the nation's total income in 2011 as in 2010, according to new data from the Longitudinal Administrative Databank. Top income shares fell in 2007, 2008 and 2009 and were relatively stable in 2010 and 2011. The top 5% of tax filers held 23.8% of the nation's income in both 2010 and 2011 while the shares for the top 1%, top 0.1% and 0.01% were 10.6%, 3.7%, and 1.3% respectively in both years.

Related table:
Percentage of total income received by income group and province, 2010 and 2011
http://www.statcan.gc.ca/daily-quotidien/131209/t131209b001-eng.htm

CANSIM Tables:
Table 204-0001 :
http://www5.statcan.gc.ca/cansim/a03?lang=eng&pattern=204-0001&p2=31
Table CANSIM table204-0002 : http://www5.statcan.gc.ca/cansim/a03?lang=eng&pattern=204-0002&p2=31

How income inequality hurts every Canadian's chance of building a better life
http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/time-to-lead/our-time-to-lead-income-inequality/article15316231/
November 8, 2013
Canada is facing a Wealth Paradox. As wealth continues to grow at the top, the economic health of the whole grows poorer. Already, mobility between income groups has slowed – it is much harder to get ahead than it used to be. If no action is taken, the Canadian dream itself may be in peril.

This article is part of The Globe's Wealth Paradox series [ http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/time-to-lead/ ], a two-week examination into how the wealth divide is shaping Canada's cities, schools, social programs – and even its national sport.

Source:
The Globe and Mail
http://www.theglobeandmail.com/

Five years of economic recovery have been far from equal
http://goo.gl/UysbzJ
By Armine Yalnizyan
September 19, 2013
Five years after a global economic crisis unleashed chaos on markets everywhere, income inequality has become an inescapable political and economic issue, in Canada as elsewhere. That’s because of mounting evidence that the increasingly skewed distribution of gains from economic growth slows future growth potential, and erodes trust that a democratically governed system is working for the benefit of the majority.
(...)
Canada and the world have entered a period of subdued economic growth, partly self-inflicted by governments’ deficit-reduction programs. Slower growth spells more friction, as the increasingly tilted distribution of gains from growth becomes increasingly obvious. For too many people, the gains from growth happen somewhere else, for someone else.

[ Armine Yalnizyan is a Senior Economist at the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives. You can follow her on twitter at @ArmineYalnizyan. ]

Source:
Globe and Mail

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/

On income inequality, Andrew Coyne misses the mark
https://www.broadbentinstitute.ca/en/blog/income-inequality-andrew-coyne-misses-mark
September 3, 2013
By Andrew Jackson
Andrew Coyne marshals an impressive range of statistics ("The myth of income inequality") to make the case that rising income inequality is not a serious issue.
[ http://fullcomment.nationalpost.com/2013/09/02/the-myth-of-income-inequality/ ]
A careful reading of his article shows that this is not the case.
(...)
The key point is that good (or at least better) times for the economy from about 2000 to 2008 did not change the dismal trend of the previous two decades. A temporarily rising tide did not make incomes more equal than they had been, as used to be the case in years of recovery. Coyne's best efforts notwithstanding, income inequality is very much an issue.

Source:
The Broadbent Blog
https://www.broadbentinstitute.ca/en/blog
The Broadbent Blog is part of the
Broadbent Institute
http://www.broadbentinstitute.ca/en

---

Also by Andrew Jackson
in the Broadbent Blog:

Two sides of the same Coyne
https://www.broadbentinstitute.ca/en/blog/two-sides-same-coyne
September 5, 2013
By Andrew Jackson
In his recent article in the National Post on the “myth” of rising income inequality, Andrew Coyne argues that, when it comes to poverty, “the news is quite remarkably good.”
He posts a chart showing the proportion of the population living below Statistics Canada’s Low Income Cut-Off (LICO). This indeed shows a decline from the late 1990s, to under 9%. Could this possibly be the same Andrew Coyne who argued in Macleans Magazine in 2009 that the LICO measure is far inferior to the Low Income Measure of poverty?

Income Inequality, Equality of Opportunity,
and Intergenerational Mobility
(PDF - 1.1MB, 31 pages)
http://ftp.iza.org/dp7520.pdf
July 2013
By Miles Corak
Abstract:
Families, labor markets, and public policies all structure a child’s opportunities and determine the extent to which adult earnings are related to family background. Cross-country comparisons and the underlying trends suggest that these drivers will most likely lower the degree of intergenerational earnings mobility for the next generation of Americans coming of age in a more polarized labor market, while the substantial rise in the income shares of the top 1 percent, their access to sources of high-quality human capital investment for their children, and the intergenerational transmission of employers and wealth will imply a much higher rate of transmission of economic advantage at the very top.

Source:
Institute for the Study of Labor
http://www.iza.org/
The Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA) in Bonn is a local and virtual international research center
and a place of communication between science, politics and business

From Statistics Canada:
http://www.statcan.gc.ca/start-debut-eng.html

June 14, 2013
(Under New products and studies):
The Canadian Economy in Transition:
"Saving and Wealth: The Adequacy of Household Saving in Canada"

HTML version : http://www.statcan.gc.ca/pub/11-622-m/11-622-m2013029-eng.htm
PDF version (528K, 44 pages) : http://www.statcan.gc.ca/pub/11-622-m/11-622-m2013029-eng.pdf
By Huju Liu, Yuri Ostrovsky and Jie Zhou
This paper examines one dimension of the overall state of financial preparedness for retirement in Canada by assessing the adequacy of households’ private saving.

Finance Committee commences income inequality study, but whose interests do they have in mind?
http://www.cpj.ca/en/content/finance-committee-commences-income-inequality-study-whose-interests-do-they-have-mind
April 25th, 2013
By Simon Lewchuk and Brad Wassink | Thursday
Ten months after MPs voted to study income inequality in Canada, the House Finance Committee finally held their first of three meetings on the topic last Tuesday. And while three meetings isn’t much, it’s better than one, which is what the committee is said to have originally planned on. The credit goes to the civil society organizations and concerned Canadians who spoke out and demanded that the committee give more time and attention to this important issue. It seems the MPs were listening, at least partially.
But lest we get too excited about this small victory, one needs only to have been at last week’s meeting to question whether the Finance Committee is really interested in a serious, balanced discussion or mere theatrics and partisan posturing.

Last time we checked, the Canadian Taxpayers Federation, the C.D. Howe Institute, the Montreal Economic Institute and the Fraser Institute (who got two witness spots) weren’t exactly representing the interests of the common Canadian.

Source:
Citizens for Public Justice

http://www.cpj.ca/

47 Submissions to the
Parliamentary Committee Study of Income Inequality
April 2013
On March 18, 2013, the House of Commons Standing Committee on Finance ("FINA") announced that it would begin a study on income inequality in Canada in April 2013; the Committee also invited interested Canadian groups and individuals to submit a brief expressing their views to the Committee before April 5 on the subject of income inequality.

March 18 (2013) FINA
News Release announcing the study:

http://www.parl.gc.ca/HousePublications/Publication.aspx?DocId=6037233&Mode=1&Parl=41&Ses=1&Language=E
NOTE by Gilles : Newsletter subscribers will recall my lament last week about the labyrinthine and arcane Parliamentary website that forces visitors to sign up for multiple mailing lists if they want to stay abreast of all matters parliamentary. I hadn't signed up for news releases from the FINA Committee, so I didn't learn about this announcement until two days before the deadline for submissions. I immediately joined the FINA list FINA mailing list. Yesterday (April 20), I received an email notification about the following:

47 Submissions to the
House of Commons Standing Committee on Finance
reviewing Income Inequality in Canada
April 2013
http://www.parl.gc.ca/HousePublications/Publication.aspx?DocId=6079428&Language=e&Mode=1&Parl=41&Ses=1
Click the link above to access any of the submissions in the box below, all of which are small PDF files
Recommended reading!

NOTE : Three new submissions have since been added to the collection (see "ADDED APRIL 26")


A
Atira Women's Resource Society

B
Boadway, Robin

C
Caldbick, Sam
Campaign 2000
Canada Without Poverty
Canadian Association for Community Living
Canadian Association Of Neighbourhood Services
Canadian Association of Social Workers
Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives
Canadian Co-operative Association
Canadian Federation of University Women
Canadian Medical Association --- ADDED APRIL 26
Canadian Nurses Association
Canadian Union of Public Employees
Canadians for Tax Fairness
Child Care Advocacy Association of Canada
Citizens for Public Justice
Corak, Miles --- ADDED APRIL 26
Corbett, Bradley A.
Council of Canadians with Disabilities

E
EconomicInequality.ca

F
Face of Poverty Consultation
Farkas, Edward J.
Frontier Centre for Public Policy --- ADDED APRIL 26

G
Generation Squeeze
Gibson, Diana
Greselin, Francesca

H
Hamilton Roundtable for Poverty Reduction
Hulchanski, David


L
Labonté, Ronald
Lahey, Kathleen A.

M
Murdie, Robert A.

P
Parent Support Services Society of British Columbia
Pasquazzi, Leo
Poverty and Employment Precarity in Southern Ontario

R
Robson, Jennifer
Rogerson, Patricia
Ruckert, Arne

S
Sigurdson, Lori
Social and Enterprise Development Innovations (SEDI)
Social Planning Council of Winnipeg

U
United Way Toronto

W
Walks, Alan
Wellesley Institute
Williams, Rebecca
Women's Action Alliance for Change Nova Scotia
Womens Centres Connect

Y
YWCA Canada
YWCA Hamilton

Z
Zitikis, Ricardas


---

Source:
House of Commons Standing Committee on Finance

http://www.parl.gc.ca/committeebusiness/CommitteeHome.aspx?Cmte=FINA&Language=E&Mode=1&Parl=41&Ses=1

Canada Parliamentary website
http://www.parl.gc.ca/

Income, Wealth, and Inequality
On April 15, 2012, the day before the first of three days of study on inequality by the House Finance Committee [ See http://goo.gl/wjoCg ], Citizens for Public Justice released "Income, Wealth, and Inequality" . The report consists of seven two-page fact sheets, covering a range of topics from income trends, to the impact of inequality, to the growing concentration of wealth.

Full report:

Poverty Trends Scorecard : Income, Wealth, and Inequality (PDF - 1.7MB, 26 pages)
http://www.cpj.ca/files/docs/Income_Wealth_and_Inequality_low_res.pdf
TWO TIPS:
1. In the "Endnotes" section of this report, you'll find links to over two dozen online related resources.
2. Check out the table on page 4 entitled "Wealth, and Inequality Trends from 1981 to 2010". Below, you'll find a link to a complementary report released in September 2012 by Andrew Sharpe of the Centre for the Study of Living Standards entitled " Impact of Redistribution on Income Inequality in Canada and the Provinces, 1981-2010"

Fact Sheets:

NOTE : The full report (the link above) comprises the seven fact sheets below (small PDF files, two pages each).

* After-tax incomes in Canada: Running hard to stand still
http://www.cpj.ca/files/docs/Fact_Sheet_1.pdf

* After-tax incomes by household type: Singles being left behind
http://www.cpj.ca/files/docs/Fact_Sheet_2.pdf

* Market income trends: Still waiting for the recovery to take hold
http://www.cpj.ca/files/docs/Fact_Sheet_3.pdf

* Income inequality: The growing gap
http://www.cpj.ca/files/docs/Fact_Sheet_4.pdf

* Income inequality: Canada doing less to offset inequality than in the past
http://www.cpj.ca/files/docs/Fact_Sheet_5.pdf

* Wealth in Canada: Concentrated in the hands of a few
http://www.cpj.ca/files/docs/Fact_Sheet_6.pdf

* Household debt: At an all-time high
http://www.cpj.ca/files/docs/Fact_Sheet_7.pdf

Report summary
http://www.cpj.ca/files/docs/Summary.pdf

Chart of median market and after-tax incomes by province
http://www.cpj.ca/files/docs/Median_Market.pdf

Source:
Poverty Trends Scorecard
http://www.cpj.ca/en/poverty-trends-scorecard

Citizens for Public Justice
http://www.cpj.ca/
Our mission is to promote public justice in Canada by shaping key public policy debates through research and analysis, publishing and public dialogue. CPJ encourages citizens, leaders in society and governments to support policies and practices which reflect God’s call for love, justice and stewardship.

Related link:

The Impact of Redistribution on
Income Inequality in Canada and the Provinces, 1981-2010
(PDF - 836K, 50 pages)
http://www.csls.ca/reports/csls2012-08.pdf
By Andrew Sharpe and Evan Capeluck
September 2012
The objective of the study is to provide an overview of trends in income inequality, defined as the Gini coefficient, in Canada and the provinces over the 1981-2010 period and to investigate the impact of redistributive policies – namely, taxes and transfers – on these trends.

Source:
Centre for the Study of Living Standards

http://www.csls.ca/
The Centre for the Study of Living Standards is a non-profit, national, independent organization that seeks to contribute to a better understanding of trends in and determinants of productivity, living standards and economic and social well-being through research.

From
Canada Without Poverty (CWP):

Inequality: What the Fed Finance Committee should know
http://www.cwp-csp.ca/2013/04/inequality-what-the-fed-finance-committee-should-know/
April 8, 2013
This month the federal Finance Committee (see the links under the red bar belowis set to study income inequality over a three-day period: April 16, 25 and 30th.
(...)
While the study was only slated for one day of review originally, the committee clearly heard the voice of the public calling for more time and added two extra days. In preparation for the review this month, the Committee also had an open call for submissions on income inequality. This public consultation process was welcome, and Canada Without Poverty joined the collection of voices speaking out about the effects inequality has on individuals, families and society as a whole and made a submission as well.

CWP's 2013 Inequality Submission to the
Federal Finance Committee
(Microsoft Word file - 118K, 6 pages)
http://www.cwp-csp.ca/wp-content/uploads/2013/04/130405-CWP-Submission-on-Inequality-to-the-Finance-Committee.doc
April 5, 2013

Source:
Canada Without Poverty (CWP)
http://www.cwp-csp.ca/
Poverty is a violation of human rights. We work to address the structural causes of poverty by raising awareness, educating and inspiring others to support its eradication in Canada.

Parliamentary Committee Study of Income Inequality
http://www.parl.gc.ca/HousePublications/Publication.aspx?DocId=6037233&Mode=1&Parl=41&Ses=1&Language=E
On March 18, 2013, the House of Commons Standing Committee on Finance ("FINA") announced that it will begin a study on income inequality in Canada in April 2013.

Click the link above to access the March 18 FINA news release.
Excerpt:
"The study will:
* review Canada’s federal and provincial systems of personal income taxation and income supports;
* examine best practices that reduce income inequality and improve per capita gross domestic product;
* identify any significant gaps in the federal system of taxation and income support that contribute to income inequality;
* identify any significant disincentives to paid work in the formal economy that may exist as part of a “welfare trap;” and
* provide recommendations on how best to improve equality of opportunity and prosperity for all Canadians."

The deadline to submit a brief to the Committee was Friday, April 5.

---
[NOTE by Gilles : Sorry I didn't post this earlier. The Canada Parliamentary website [ http://www.parl.gc.ca/ ] is (IMHO) both labyrinthine and arcane, forcing visitors to sign up for multiple mailing lists if they want to stay abreast of all matters parliamentary. I hadn't signed up for news releases from the FINA Committee, so I didn't learn about this announcement until this week. I am now on the FINA mailing list.]
---

Source:
House of Commons Standing Committee on Finance

http://www.parl.gc.ca/committeebusiness/CommitteeHome.aspx?Cmte=FINA&Language=E&Mode=1&Parl=41&Ses=1

For more information, please contact:
Christine Lafrance, Clerk of the Standing Committee on Finance
Tel: 613-992-9753
E-mail: FINA@parl.gc.ca

Understanding inequality and what to do about it (PDF - 532K, 32 pages)
http://goo.gl/pPh6y
February 12, 2013
By Miles Corak
Presentation by Miles Corak, Professor of economics at Ottawa University, to the federal All-Party Anti-Poverty caucus yesterday.
It looks at three questions:
1) has inequality increased in Canada?
(2) what explains the changes?
(3) why is it important for public policy?

Source:
milescorak.com
http://milescorak.com/

How Canada Performs, 2011 - February 2013
(Conference Board of Canada)

Canada failing to close the income inequality gap
http://www.newswire.ca/en/story/1108475/canada-failing-to-close-the-income-inequality-gap
February 4, 2013
Canada has been unable to reverse the rise in income inequality - and poverty rates - that occurred in the 1990s. Low rankings on these social equity measures mar an otherwise solid "B" grade in The Conference of Canada's Society report card, released today.
Canada places 7th in the How Canada Performs: Society analysis, based on international data from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development.
HIGHLIGHTS:
* Canada gets an overall "B" grade and ranks 7th of 17 countries
* One in seven Canadian children live in poverty.
* The 2008-09 financial crisis and recession increased the share of people in low income; elderly and working-age Canadians were most affected.

Source:
Canada Newswire
http://www.newswire.ca/en/index

----------------------------------------------------------

From the
Conference Board of Canada:

How Canada Performs 2011 : A Report Card on Canada
http://www.conferenceboard.ca/hcp/default.aspx
How Canada Performs is a multi-year research program to help leaders identify relative strengths and weaknesses in Canada’s socio-economic performance.
The site has over 80 pages covering a wide number of indicators, including: · Employment · GDP Growth · Income Inequality · Patents per Population · Exports · Life Expectancy · University Completions and many more.
- includes an a
bstract of the report and a link to the complete report:
https://www.conferenceboard.ca/web/Login.aspx?ReturnURL=http://www.conferenceboard.ca/e-library/abstract.aspx?did=4423
NOTE : The Conference Board of Canada "asks" visitors to register by creating a free e-Library account before downloading the report. If you really, really want to read this report, prepare to divulge the name of your organization and your job function along with your street address and telephone number and more. I value my privacy and I didn't give any of my personal and private information, so I couldn't download the report.
(!?&*@$^!!)
Pity...

Each indicator contains data from 17 countries:
* Australia * Austria * Belgium* Canada * Denmark * Finland * France * Germany * Ireland * Italy * Japan * Netherlands * Norway * Sweden * Switzerland *
United Kingdom * United States

Details and Analysis:
Categories and indicators

http://www.conferenceboard.ca/hcp/Details.aspx
- incl. links to ALL indicators under the following categories:
* Economy * Environment * Society * Health * Innovation * Education and Skills

Selected content from the
"Society" category:

Jobless Youth --- http://www.conferenceboard.ca/HCP/Details/society/jobless-youth.aspx
Disabled income --- http://www.conferenceboard.ca/HCP/Details/society/disabled-income.aspx
Elderly poverty --- http://www.conferenceboard.ca/HCP/Details/society/elderly-poverty.aspx
Child poverty --- http://www.conferenceboard.ca/HCP/Details/society/child-poverty.aspx
Working-age poverty --- http://www.conferenceboard.ca/HCP/Details/society/working-age-poverty.aspx
Income inequality --- http://www.conferenceboard.ca/hcp/Details/society/income-inequality.aspx
Intergenerational income mobility --- http://www.conferenceboard.ca/hcp/Details/society/intergenerational-income-mobility.aspx
Social isolation --- http://www.conferenceboard.ca/hcp/Details/society/social-isolation.aspx
Gender income gap --- http://www.conferenceboard.ca/hcp/Details/society/gender-income-gap.aspx
---
To access the links for the following categories, click "Details and analysis" above.
---
Voter turnout
Confidence in parliament
Homicides
Burglaries
Assaults
Life satisfaction
Acceptance of diversity
Suicides

---

Society : Key Messages and links
http://www.conferenceboard.ca/hcp/Details/society.aspx
* Canada earns a “B” and ranks 7th out of 17 peer countries in the Society report card. Canada’s middle-of-the-pack ranking means it is not living up to its reputation or its potential.
* Canada’s social performance has remained a “B” over the last two decades.
* Canada’s “D” grade on the poverty rate for working-age people, and its “C” grades on child poverty, income inequality and gender equity are troubling for a wealthy country.
---
NOTE : When the U.N. Rapporteur on Food Security said pretty much the same thing recently about poverty and inequality in pretty much the same words in May 2012 [ http://goo.gl/15eP9 ], senior federal ministers called him "a bit patronizing" and "ill-informed."
So is the Conference Board of Canada also "a bit patronizing" and "ill-informed"??

Source:
How Canada Performs 2011 : A Report Card on Canada

http://www.conferenceboard.ca/hcp/default.aspx
Conference Board of Canada

http://www.conferenceboard.ca/
The Conference Board builds leadership capacity for a better Canada by creating and sharing insights on economic trends, public policy and organizational performance.

--------------------------------------

From the
Toronto Star:
[
http://www.thestar.com/ ]

Conference Board findings on poverty, inequality should spur change: Editorial
http://www.thestar.com/opinion/editorials/2013/02/05/conference_board_findings_on_poverty_inequality_should_spur_change_editorial.html
The Conference Board has just given Canada poor grades on dealing with poverty and income inequity, in its report card on How Canada Performs.
We can do better.

February 6, 2013
Canada may bask in its five-star image as a nation where the roads are paved with silver, if not gold. But for many of us the reality is less rosy, the Conference Board of Canada finds in its latest report on How Canada Performs. In fact, our national performance is downright “troubling for a wealthy country” when it comes to some key social indicators including the rich/poor gap, and the number of working-age adults and children living in poverty.
(...)
So what, then, is Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s Conservative government focused on as Parliament resumes? Well, that would be Senate reform and yet more tough-on-crime laws, two issues that play to the party’s grassroots even though most Canadians worry more about jobs and the economy.

--------------------------------------

From the
Ottawa Citizen:

Shared prosperity
http://www.ottawacitizen.com/opinion/editorials/Editorial+Shared+prosperity/7916841/story.html
February 4, 2013
Editorial
The wealthiest one per cent get a lot of attention these days, but the real cause for concern is a bigger group of people, down at the bottom of the income spectrum. Beyond Canada’s simple humanitarian duty to make sure all its citizens have access to the necessities of life, there are real social and economic consequences when skills and opportunities are out of reach for many.

So the latest “How Canada Performs” report from the Conference Board of Canada, which focuses on “Society,” should give policy-makers something to consider. It gives Canada a “D” grade on working-age poverty, and a “C” on child poverty and income inequality. Those grades reflect Canada’s performance relative to 16 of its “peer countries” in the developed world. Poverty among the elderly in Canada has actually risen more quickly than in the other age groups, but relative to our peer group, we’re doing well on that score...

Source:
Ottawa Citizen
http://www.ottawacitizen.com/

Europe’s economic crisis: How the rich avoid paying their tax bill
http://www.thestar.com/news/world/2013/02/02/europes_economic_crisis_how_the_rich_avoid_paying_their_tax_bill.html
February 3, 2013
The world’s wealthiest citizens and corporations refuse to pay their share of taxes by moving enormous sums to tax havens, critics charge.
(...)
State coffers are dwindling as the financial crisis deepens, but a growing chorus of people — including economists and businessmen — say the root of the crisis is that the world’s wealthiest citizens and corporations refuse to pay their share of taxes by moving enormous sums to tax havens where there is little or no income tax.
(...)
Approximately $12 trillion of unreported, private financial wealth from the developed world — including Europe, Canada and the United States — is held in about 80 tax havens (...). If the $12 trillion earned a modest 3 per cent annual return and was taxed at 30 per cent it would generate $150 billion to $200 billion a year — more than enough to pay for Europe’s budget deficits, calculates Henry.

Source:
Toronto Star

http://www.thestar.com/news/

January 28, 2013

New report on income inequality
from Statistics Canada:

High-income trends among Canadian taxfilers, 1982 to 2010
http://www.statcan.gc.ca/daily-quotidien/130128/dq130128a-eng.htm
January 28, 2013
The top 1% of Canada's 25.5 million tax filers accounted for 10.6% of the nation's total income in 2010, down from a peak of 12.1% in 2006. In the early 1980s, the top 1% of tax filers held 7.0% of the total income reported by all tax filers. This proportion edged up to 8.0% in the early 1990s and reached 11.0% by the early 2000s.
- includes one table ("Characteristics of high income Canadians, total income, national thresholds, Canada, 2010") and links to the following free CANSIM tables:
CANSIM table 204-0001 - http://www5.statcan.gc.ca/cansim/a03?lang=eng&pattern=204-0001&p2=31
CANSIM table 204-0002 - http://www5.statcan.gc.ca/cansim/a03?lang=eng&pattern=204-0002&p2=31

Related subjects:

* Income, pensions, spending and wealth
http://www5.statcan.gc.ca/subject-sujet/result-resultat.action?pid=3868&id=3868&lang=eng&type=DAILYART

* Household, family and personal income
http://www5.statcan.gc.ca/subject-sujet/result-resultat.action?pid=3868&id=2812&lang=eng&type=DAILYART

Note to readers:
This release provides a follow-up to information contained in the research paper A Profile of High Income Canadians, 1982 to 2004, released in September 2007:
http://www.statcan.gc.ca/bsolc/olc-cel/olc-cel?catno=75F0002M2007006&lang=eng

Source:
Statistics Canada

http://www.statcan.gc.ca/start-debut-eng.html

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Related links:

From the
Globe and Mail:

How more tax on the super-rich will help ease income inequality
http://goo.gl/P7XCW
By Andrew Jackson
January 30, 2013
Congratulations to Statistics Canada for providing an update on top incomes in Canada, and for launching two new CANSIM tables allowing researchers to dig into the details. While the income share of the top 1 per cent has slipped slightly since the Great Recession – likely due in large part to the reduced value of exercised stock options – their share of all income (10.6 per cent in 2010) still stands well above the low of about 7 per cent that was reached in the early 1980s.

[Author Andrew Jackson is the Packer Professor of Social Justice at York
University and Senior Policy Adviser to the Broadbent Institute.]

---

Statscan’s been gazing at the poor for decades, so why not the rich?
http://www.theglobeandmail.com/commentary/statscans-been-gazing-at-the-poor-for-decades-so-why-not-the-rich/article7998247/
By Michael Wolfson
January 30, 2013
Statistics Canada this week released data on the incomes of the top 1 per cent of tax filers, and compared these to the incomes of the remaining 99 per cent. Not surprisingly, this small segment of the population receives a disproportionate share of the pie...
(...)
What you may not have noticed is that this is the first time Statscan has ever produced such data as part of its standard suite of statistics. One of the challenges for a national statistical agency is to stay relevant to the issues of the day. The Occupy movement has been news for more than a year, and we even have the elite of the business community in Davos recently putting income inequality at the top of their agenda. So these new data are most welcome.
(...)
Statistics Canada has a long and exemplary history of producing data on incomes and income inequality. (...) But these [household] surveys were never sufficiently reliable to provide data on the top 1 per cent, so such data were not published until this past Monday. (...) Statscan is to be commended for balancing its long-standing statistical series on those with low- and middle incomes with these newly available data on those with high incomes.

[Author Michael Wolfson is a former assistant chief statistician at Statistics Canada, and has a PhD in economics from Cambridge.]

Source:
Globe and Mail

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

From
Miles Corak:

Why the rich don’t want to talk about inequality, and why the 99% do
http://milescorak.com/2013/02/01/why-the-rich-dont-want-to-talk-about-inequality-and-why-the-99-do/
February 1, 2013
(...)
The average income of those in the top 1% in Canada has about doubled since 1982, and for the top 0.1% it has increased by about two and a half to three-fold. But over this period the fraction of their income paid in taxes, their average tax rate, has remained about the same, and even a little lower. Economists judge the functioning of the tax system in a number of ways: certainly the system should not be administratively cumbersome, and it should, to the greatest degree possible, not cause individuals in a well-functioning market to change their behaviour. It should also treat equals equally. Finally, the tax system should raise more revenue where it will cause the least pain. And this last concern, when coupled with Marshall’s reasoning, suggests that tax rates should be progressive: as income increases, the greater the fraction that should be paid in taxes. And this simple lesson from an economics textbook written a hundred years ago is one reason why the rich don’t want to talk about inequality, and the 99% do.

Source:
Miles Corak
http://milescorak.com/
Miles Corak is a professor at the University of Ottawa trained in labour economics, and working on child rights, poverty, immigration, social and economic mobility, unemployment, and social policy.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

From the
Calgary Herald
:

Calgary’s wealth gap called ‘most unequal in the country’
http://parklandinstitute.ca/media/comments/alberta_is_canadas_most_unequal_province/
By Jason Rassel
January 28, 2013
CALGARY - A University of Alberta think-tank has dubbed Calgary the “most unequal city in the country,” saying provincial government policies have helped create an income gap between the wealthiest one per cent and everyone else that is the widest in Canada.
In an analysis of Statistics Canada income-tax data released Monday, the University of Alberta’s Parkland Institute [ http://parklandinstitute.ca/ ] said Calgary’s richest one per cent earned 26 times what people in the bottom 90 per cent did in 2010. The gap has grown in part because Alberta’s personal income-tax policies favour the rich, and our province’s resource royalty regime subsidizes massive salaries paid to oil and gas executives, said the Parkland Institute’s research manager.

Source:
Calgary Herald

http://www.calgaryherald.com/

---

From the
Parkland Institute:

Alberta is Canada’s most unequal province
and Calgary the most unequal city
http://parklandinstitute.ca/media/comments/alberta_is_canadas_most_unequal_province/
January 28, 2013
EDMONTON – Analysis by the Parkland Institute and the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives of new data on Canada’s richest 1% shows that Alberta has become the country’s most unequal province and Calgary its most unequal city. The new data shows that incomes (adjusted for inflation) for the top 1% of Albertan doubled between 1982 and 2010, posting a shocking increase of $320,000. By comparison, the bottom 90% of Albertans saw their incomes increase by a total of only $3,900 over the same time period.

Source:
Parkland Institute
http://parklandinstitute.ca/
Parkland Institute is an Alberta-wide, non-partisan research centre situated within the Faculty of Arts at the University of Alberta.
Parkland Institute studies economic, social, cultural and political issues facing Albertans and Canadians, using the perspective of political economy. The Institute shares the results of its research widely and promotes discussion of the issues its research raises.

- Go to the Alberta Links page:
http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/abkmrk.htm

[Ontario] Will Kathleen Wynne Cross the Inequality Barrier?
http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/trish-l-hennessy/kathleen-wynne-income-inequality_b_2574313.html
January 29, 2013

By Trish L. Hennessy
Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives, Ontario Office
[ http://www.policyalternatives.ca/offices/ontario ]
Imagine if Ontario's incoming Premier -- lauded for breaking the inequality barrier on two counts -- decided to parlay her victory into a post-austerity focus on solutions to income inequality.
Now that would be truly groundbreaking. And it couldn't come at a better time. Brand new data from Statistics Canada shows Ontario holds the dubious distinction of having the second worst level of income inequality between the richest 1 per cent and the rest of us -- second only to oil-blessed Alberta.

Source:
Huffington Post Canada
http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/

Income inequality on the rise, especially in large cities
http://www.policyalternatives.ca/newsroom/updates/income-inequality-rise-especially-large-cities
January 28, 2013
Income inequality in Canada is on the rise—especially in the country's largest cities. CCPA analysis of new data finds the richest 1% of Canadians make almost $180,000 more today than they did in 1982 (adjusted for inflation), while the bottom 90% of Canadians saw income gains of only $1,700.
NOTE : Includes two graphics entitled "They're richer than you think" --- one graphic compares numbers across provinces, and the other compares numbers for eight cities across Canada.

[ Pour une analyse québécoise (en français), visitez le blogue d'IRIS:
Le 1% au Québec : plus de revenus, moins d’impôts
http://www.iris-recherche.qc.ca/blogue/le-1-au-quebec-1-plus-de-revenus-moins-dimpots ]

-----------------------------------

Beyond Austerity - A video by Trish Hennessy (duration 2:34)
http://www.policyalternatives.ca/multimedia/beyond-austerity-trish-hennessy
January 2013
CCPA-Ontario Director Trish Hennessy summarizes the "Ontario 2013: Toward a Post-Austerity Vision" core message in this two-minute video blog

Source:
BC Office - CCPA

http://www.policyalternatives.ca/offices/bc
Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA)
http://www.policyalternatives.ca/January 28, 2013

What’s wrong with debit cards for social assistance recipients?
http://openpolicyontario.com/whats-wrong-with-earmarked-debit-cards-and-lower-benefits-for-long-terms-social-assistance-recipients/
By John Stapleton
January 18, 2013
What’s wrong with earmarked debit cards and lower benefits for long terms social assistance recipients?
Nothing as long as they are not earmarked!

What’s wrong with restrictions on debit cards e.g. no liquor or cellphones?

1. The desired outcome of better spending of funds would simply not occur - no evidence is available that it would change spending patterns.
2. There would be a black market for cards just like food stamps in the US
3. Restricting inadequate funds for necessities would mean that people may not be able to pay the rent and therefore get evicted
4. A system with 800 rules would be burdened with at least 10 more rules and likely closer to 50.
5. The root causes of questionable spending e.g. addiction, lack of education would remain unaddressed and unsolved.
(...)

What’s wrong with cutting benefits to long term recipients?

1. Historically, rates for longer term recipients were increased because of the need to replace clothing, utensils etc., something that you would not require (in theory) in an emergency.

2. How does taking food off someone’s plate make them more employable? Especially the plates of children (if the policy were to apply with recipients with kids).

3. The system is now awash in incentives as a full time minimum wage job in fast food pays $17 k and social assistance pays $7,272. Anyone who can make this trade-off would pick work. Will paying less social assistance make that job less elusive?

4. It would take a 56% rate increase to get (single) rates back to where they were in 1993, the last year in which there was a real increase in social assistance incomes. Arguably the reductions the PC’s are talking about have already taken place. Job done. Mission accomplished! (And they apply to all recipients – why wait to cut?)

5. Social assistance caseloads have already begun to moderate – what’s the big concern?
(...)
Getting social policy advice from the PC’s is like getting marriage tips from the Kardashians.

Source:
Open Policy (John Stapleton's website)
http://www.openpolicyontario.com/

From the
Broadbent Institute:

A Ball Player, a Cop, a Janitor, and a Welfare Recipient
http://www.broadbentinstitute.ca/en/blog/john-stapleton-ball-player-cop-janitor-and-welfare-recipient
January 16, 2013
By John Stapleton
To whom do we compare ourselves when we think about reducing inequality?
(...)
Those among us who study history know that extreme income inequality is the stuff of nightmares-- concentrations of fabulous wealth in the hands of just a few, while millions live close to starvation, from Imperial China to Czarist Russia to the England of the early Industrial Revolution. Are we headed back in that direction? What can we do, from a public policy perspective, to stop the drift?
(...)
In 1993, the social assistance single rate [in Ontario] stood at 60% of full-time minimum wages ($6.35 an hour). The social assistance rate for singles now stands at 36% of the full-time minimum wage, which is $10.25 an hour.
(...)
We can do better.

---

Open Policy (John Stapleton's website)
http://www.openpolicyontario.com/

---

Canadians can challenge income inequality: new Broadbent Institute paper
http://www.broadbentinstitute.ca/en/blog/canadians-can-challenge-income-inequality-new-broadbent-institute-paper
October 8, 2012
News Release
By Mike Fancie
OTTAWA—Launching the next phase of its Equality Project, the Broadbent Institute has released a new discussion paper, “Towards a More Equal Canada”, which analyses the causes of, and proposes solutions to, income inequality. The paper follows the springtime publication of a Broadbent Institute-commissioned Environics poll on income inequality that shows Canadians overwhelmingly support taking action to alleviate our growing inequality problem.

The report:

Towards A More Equal Canada (PDF - 2.3MB, 26 pages)
http://www.broadbentinstitute.ca/sites/default/files/documents/towards_a_more_equal_canada.pdf
October 2012
This report is part of the Broadbent Institute’s Equality Project. Launched in the spring of 2012, the project includes a Broadbent Institute-commissioned Environics poll which showed a majority of Canadians support taking action to reduce inequality, a social media campaign, and an animated video.

Source:
The Equality Project
http://www.broadbentinstitute.ca/en/project/equality-project

The Equality Project is an initiative of
The Broadbent Institute

http://www.broadbentinstitute.ca/
The Broadbent Institute seeks to equip the next generation of progressive thinkers and activists with the ideas and tools they need to build a more progressive Canada.

Executive pay in Canada: Overcompensating?
For Canada’s 100 highest paid CEOs, the rewards start clocking in very early into the New Year.
http://www.policyalternatives.ca/newsroom/updates/executive-pay-canada-overcompensating
January 3, 2013
By 1:18pm on January 2, the first official working day of the year, Canada’s top 100 CEOs will have already pocketed $45,448. It takes the average Canadian an entire year of full-time work to earn that.

Our latest report, Overcompensating: Executive Pay in Canada, highlights some key numbers around executive pay in Canada and also includes a list of Canada's highest paid 100 CEOs.

Overcompensating: Executive Pay in Canada (PDF - 104K, 3 pages)
http://goo.gl/akl8X

You can also visit our pay clock, The Clash for the Cash: CEO vs. Average Joe, to find out just how much the average worker and top CEO have earned so far.

The Clash for the Cash: CEO vs. Average Joe
http://www.policyalternatives.ca/ceo

Source:
Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives

http://www.policyalternatives.ca/

Why the 99 per cent still matter in Canadian politics
http://www.thestar.com/opinion/editorialopinion/article/1308352
December 30, 2012
By Hugh Mackenzie
A year after the Occupy movement focused public attention on the income, wealth and opportunity gap between the top 1 per cent and the 99 per cent, the issue is attracting the attention of conservatives in Canada. Quite simply, they want the problem to go away. So they’re intent on a simple message: chill out, Canada, inequality isn’t the problem.

Two reports — one by the Fraser Institute [ http://goo.gl/VXbf2 ], the other by TD Economics [ (PDF) http://goo.gl/yNCBM ] — illustrate the attempt to spin the issues as nothing to worry about. They also have another thing in common. Their results don’t support the headlines they gave their own reports. The Fraser Institute study purported to demonstrate that economic mobility is still strong in Canada. In reality, it only demonstrated mobility at the bottom end of the income scale. People tend to move back and forth between poverty and the middle class, but less so at the top end of the income scale where the Horatio Alger myth resides.

TD got a lot of mileage from its claim that income inequality in Canada hadn’t changed since 1998. In fact, the report showed income inequality remained steady in the 2000s, but that it had continued to widen at the bottom and the top of the income distribution — precisely the concern of the Occupy protests. The TD results contrasted sharply with the more balanced view of the Conference Board, which gave Canada a “C” for income inequality among OECD countries, making the point that Canada looks good only in comparison with the United States, which displays among the most extreme inequality in the OECD.

(...)

It would be unwise for those who are benefiting from growing inequality to adopt the complacency encouraged by reports like those of the TD Bank and the Fraser Institute. If we have learned anything from the Arab Spring and the European responses to deadening austerity, it is that the consequences of a breakdown of social cohesion can be unpredictable. And that can create widespread social unrest that no one can escape — not even the gated 1 per cent.

Author Hugh Mackenzie is an economist with the
Growing Gap project
[ http://www.policyalternatives.ca/projects/growing-gap/ ]
of the
Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives
[ http://www.policyalternatives.ca/ ]

Source:
Toronto Star

http://www.thestar.com/

Ed Broadbent on rising inequality and the threat to the Canadian dream
http://www.thestar.com/opinion/editorialopinion/article/1306109
December 26, 2012
(...) The political decisions and investments we made decades ago not only in public education but in health care, pensions, employment insurance and progressive income taxes made all the difference. By reducing real inequalities in life we laid the foundations for a society with genuine equality of opportunity — one where it didn’t matter that much on which side of the tracks you were born. But we have recently been moving in the opposite direction, toward a less equal society.
(...)
Canadian values demand that we do something about rising inequality before we turn into a winner-take-all society with a permanent underclass. We are in this together, and that means we must once again care and share.

NOTE : this article includes links to recent discussion papers and commentaries by the Broadbent Institute, the Fraser Institute, Miles Corak (University of Ottawa) and Michael Veall (past president of the Canadian Economics Association)

Source:
Toronto Star

http://www.thestar.com/

How do we begin a dialogue about inequality with conservative Canadians?
http://openpolicyontario.com/how-do-we-begin-a-dialogue-about-inequality-with-conservative-canadians/

December 18, 2012
As someone who spent a career in social welfare, I have often been a sounding board for conservative acquaintances, particularly those who are advanced in years. “I say, let them starve,” one of my relatives declared to me at a family dinner. What he meant by that is:
“Why don’t these people behave? Why don’t they just do what they’re supposed to do? I went out, I worked hard, why shouldn’t they work hard? And if they don’t work hard, then they should starve.”

In pondering how to respond to sentiments like these, I have been much aided by Jonathan Haidt, author of The Righteous Mind: Why Good People are Divided by Politics and Religion. Haidt himself is a liberal social democrat. But he has successfully analysed why conservatives and the conservative mindset wins in our current political climate. In a chapter called “The Conservative Advantage” Haidt compares the “moral palette” of conservatives and of liberal, progressive, social democrats.He says that people who are liberal, progressive, social democrats have a moral palette comprised of two great concerns. The first is care, care for others. We think about people who are less well off than we are. We think about people who are making a lot more money than we do. We are always thinking about equality. We want everyone to do well. He says that the other part of our moral palette is fairness. Our greatest concern is having a society that’s based on fairness and equity.

The moral palette of the conservative also has caring and fairness in it, but caring and fairness come at the bottom. Four other components of the conservative moral palette come first:
* Sanctity
* Loyalty
* Liberty
* Authority
(...)
Any of us who wish to reduce inequality will have to tackle the policy dilemma of turning the negative abstraction of ‘inequality’ into a positive and concrete course of action. We will have to recommend lasting, publicly acceptable ways in which equality should be achieved.

Source:
Open Policy
(John Stapleton's website)
http://www.openpolicyontario.com/

Two perspectives on income inequality in Canada:
TD Economics / Andrew Coyne vs Miles Corak
( Economics prof, University of Ottawa)
December 11, 14, 16 and 18
+ Armine's two cents' worth!

---

ROUND ONE: Special Report from TD Economics

Income and Income Inequality – A Tale of Two Countries (PDF - 864K 7 pages)
http://www.td.com/document/PDF/economics/special/ff1212_income.pdf
December 11, 2012

Highlights:

• The devastating impact of the financial crisis has pushed U.S. median household income to a 16-year low. Meanwhile, in Canada, an economic outperformance over the 2000s and a milder impact from the recession has led to a strong pace of income growth since 1998. As a result, median household income in Canada has been higher than in the U.S. since 2006 and the gap between the two is now at its highest level (in favour of Canada) since the 1980s.

• Income inequality is both persistently lower and rising more slowly in Canada than in the United States. In fact, inequality in Canada has been flat since 1998, as measured by the Gini coefficient.

• The stable (rather than worsening) trend in Canadian income inequality may come as a surprise in light of the heavy global focus on the growing divide between the rich and the poor in recent years. A deeper dive into Canadian income distribution reveals strong income growth at the lower and higher ends of the spectrum, but a comparatively weak performance for middle-income families.

• Assessing shifts in inequality through the income statistics alone doesn’t capture the whole story. For example, the Gini coefficient does not include the role real estate and financial assets have played in driving increasing inequality in household wealth. It also does not consider the concentration of
income that has occurred among the top 1% or top 0.1% of Canadians

Source:
TD Economics
http://www.td.com/economics/analysis/economics-index.jsp

---

From the
Montreal Gazette:

http://www.montrealgazette.com/

Andrew Coyne: there has been no ‘growing gap’ between rich and poor,
despite the thousands of references to that effect you will have seen
http://goo.gl/6Xcjj
By Andrew Coyne
December 14
(...)
In the past two decades (...) Canada has experienced more or less uninterrupted growth. Hence falling unemployment, hence declining poverty, rising incomes and flattening inequality. Why has none of this registered in the public mind? Why have we heard nothing of the record low numbers living on low income?
(...)
One is forced to conclude it is the influence of the American media. Every one of the ailments we imagine ourselves to be suffering is a reality in the United States: Where our incomes are growing, theirs are stagnating; where poverty here is at record lows, there it is at record highs; where inequality in Canada has not grown in recent years, in the United States it has surged. (...) While we (in CAnada) have been largely spared the ravages of recession in the last decade, the Americans have endured two, the last especially severe. The big surprise in that TD study, it would seem, is that Canada is not the United States.

--------------------------------------------------

Counterpoint from
Miles Corak's blog:

Three rules for good pundit behaviour, or if you like:
how to obstruct the debate on inequality in three easy steps

http://milescorak.com/2012/12/16/three-rules-for-good-pundit-behaviour-or-if-you-like-how-to-obstruct-the-debate-on-inequality-in-three-easy-steps/
December 16, 2012
By Miles Corak
Inequality is increasing in Canada. Or is it?
A short report on the topic released by a major Canadian bank [ TD Economics - see above ] includes the bold heading “Income inequality has been unchanged in Canada — say what?”. This apparently contrarian finding has been seized upon by at least one influential pundit [Andrew Coyne] in a way that only serves to obstruct constructive public policy discussion.
(...) But this sort of discussion requires the best of our public commentators, and in this post I offer three rules for good pundit behaviour. Economic statistics can be confusing and they can be used in confusing ways, purposely or not, and so these rules might also be a set of general guideposts for the average reader to help separate fact from fiction, since after all we can’t expect pundits to always follow them.

Rule 1: Look for the underlying trends
Rule 2: Recognize that statistical concepts aren’t truths, they are tools to be used in situations for which they are appropriate. Use them carefully, improper use can be dangerous!
Rule 3: Don’t over-reach your power to explain, rather look for the next set of puzzles.

Source:
Economics for Public Policy (Miles Corak's blog)
http://milescorak.com/
Author Miles Corak is professor of economics at the University of Ottawa, where he has worked since 2007 teaching principles of economics in a way relevant for public policy. He also teaches labour economics, social policy, and statistical research methods.

---

ROUND TWO: Followup TD Observation:

Income Inequality Under Various Income Metrics (PDF - 796K, 3 pages)
http://www.td.com/document/PDF/economics/special/ff1212_income_update.pdf
TD Economics Observation
December 18, 2012
In a recent report (Income and Income Inequality – A Tale of Two Countries), TD Economics reported that the traditional economic benchmark for income inequality, the Gini coefficient, has remained largely unchanged since 1998 in Canada. In light of that finding, we received numerous responses from experts and policymakers asking why we had used pre-tax total household income (which includes government transfers) as opposed to other measures that are available. Given the interest, we thought it would be useful to illustrate that the story does not change if one uses after tax or market income or numbers adjusted for family size.

---

Counterpoint from
Miles Corak's blog:

Has income inequality really been unchanged in Canada? :
a reader’s guide to the recent TD report

http://milescorak.com/2012/12/18/has-income-inequality-really-been-unchanged-in-canada-a-readers-guide-to-the-recent-td-report/
December 18, 2012
To some there would appear to be a debate over whether inequality has increased in Canada. My view is that it has in fact increased, but at the same time its nature has changed.
However, a recent report released by the economic analysis branch of the TD Bank has been interpreted by a columnist at one important national news paper to suggest that inequality has not been changing. Some readers of my December 16th post attempting to clarify this perspective have asked for my own interpretation of the TD report. This is what I offer here...

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Miles Corak's take on the issue is heartily supported by
Armine Yalnizyan, senior Economist with the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives:

Why The Income Inequality Deniers Are Wrong
http://www.progressive-economics.ca/2012/12/21/why-the-income-inequality-deniers-are-wrong/
By Armine Yalnizyan
December 21, 2012
[An abridged version of this blog post appeared in today's National Post:
http://fullcomment.nationalpost.com/2012/12/21/armine-yalnizyan-sorry-andrew-coyne-but-income-inequality-is-a-real-problem/ ]
---
You couldn’t have made it through 2012 without running into a story about income inequality. Chances are, it made you think about how you fit into the story. That’s “entirely constructive”, as Bank of Canada Governor Mark Carney called the awakening triggered by the global Occupy movement.

A year later, some people think it’s time you go back to sleep. A new debate is emerging in Canada: is inequality worth discussing at all? On the “no” side are four main arguments, all deeply flawed:
*
Canada is not like the US
* The growing gap is not growing in Canada anymore
* Income inequality is not an issue because people experience income mobility
* Income inequality is not the problem; poverty is.
(...)
The International Monetary Fund has warned that higher inequality is correlated to shorter spells of growth, more market volatility. The Conference Board of Canada cautions that Canada’s levels of inequality mean squandered potential. Just this week TD Bank CEO Ed Clarke acknowledged inequality in Canada has been growing for the last 30 years, raising a challenge for society that demands discussion.
(...)
Income inequality has become as inconvenient a truth as climate change, and every bit as challenging to our future. It, too, has its share of deniers. But the evidence that is accumulating around the world makes clear — burying the issue under a false sense of progress won’t protect us from the massively disruptive consequences of a growing gap. Stay awake. Start talking.

Source:
Progressive Economics Forum
http://www.progressive-economics.ca/relentless/

Income gap, poverty should be election issues, senator says:
Eggleton says public pressure needed to tackle the problem

http://www.thespec.com/news/local/article/839401
November 20, 2012
Senator Art Eggleton is calling on the public to pressure politicians
to deal with the issues of poverty and income inequality. Responding to a question from Burlington Mayor Rick Goldring on what will it take to tackle these issues, the Liberal senator said the answer is political will.

.In the case of income inequality, he noted in 1980 the average CEO of a corporation made 40 times more than the average Canadian salary. Today, a CEO makes 189 times more than the average Canadian salary. (...) Eggleton, in Hamilton recently meeting with its poverty roundtable, is co-chair of the All-Party Anti-Poverty caucus. He is also co-chair of the Liberal Social and Economic Policy Caucus.
(...)
Eggleton said the situation [the growing gap between the rich and the poor] has come about because of globalization, the rise of temporary/part-time work, the loss of blue-collar jobs and the decline of union membership.

Source:
Hamilton Spectator

http://www.thespec.com/

Corporate Canada Shaping Inequality: Study
http://www.policyalternatives.ca/newsroom/news-releases/corporate-canada-shaping-inequality-study
News Release
November 16, 2012
TORONTO -- The concentration of power in the corporate sector is perpetuating income inequality trends in Canada, says a study published by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA). The study, A Shrinking Universe: How Concentrated Corporate Power is Shaping Income Inequality in Canada, links the rise of the richest Canadians with a shift toward more concentrated power within the country’s largest firms.

Complete report:

A Shrinking Universe:
How Concentrated Corporate Power is Shaping Income Inequality in Canada
(PDF - 819K, 49 pages)
http://www.policyalternatives.ca/sites/default/files/uploads/publications/National%20Office/2012/11/Shrinking_Universe.pdf
November 2012
By Jordan Brennan
The deepening of income inequality in Canada is a well-documented phenomenon, but the driving forces behind this trend have been subject to less scrutiny.
This paper looks at income inequality over time and shows how the growth of income concentration in the hands of the richest 1% is connected to the concentration
of corporate power among the 60 largest Canadian-based firms.

The study is this year’s winner of the student essay contest
at the Progressive Economics Forum:
http://www.progressive-economics.ca/
[Click for links to all winning essays.]

Source:
Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives
http://www.policyalternatives.ca/
The CCPA is an independent, non-partisan research institute concerned with issues of social and economic justice.

Corporations prosper while food banks overwhelmed
November 4, 2012
The economics department of the Toronto-Dominion Bank [ http://www.td.com/economics/analysis/economics-index.jsp ] had good news for investors amid a late-October downgrade of growth forecasts, heightened concerns about Canada’s record level of household debt, gale-force winds and lashing rain.
“Canadian corporate balance sheets are solid as a rock,” the bank assured its clients in a special report. “Unlike households and governments, companies are less vulnerable today than they were heading into the 2007-2008 financial crisis.”

Food Banks Canada, which represents the nation’s 4,500 hunger relief programs — food banks, soup kitchens, school breakfast initiatives — issued a comprehensive report the same day [ http://www.foodbankscanada.ca/getmedia/3b946e67-fbe2-490e-90dc-4a313dfb97e5/HungerCount2012.pdf ] . It was unremittingly grim. Food bank use has increased 31 per cent since the economy plunged into recession four years ago and it continues to climb. In the past 12 months alone, an additional 20,000 Canadians turned to charity to eat.
(...)
The two snapshots — one from a Bay Street office tower, one from a Mimico warehouse — depict starkly different Canadas. Not only are they separated by a yawning income chasm. Their priorities and values are so far apart that there is no common ground, no basis for conversation. That is the everyday reality behind phrases such as “the growing gap,” “a polarized society” and “an hourglass economy.”
(...)
An increasing number of employed people can no longer feed their families. The reason, the report suggests, is that 18 per cent of employed Canadians — almost one in five — earn less than $17,000 a year.
(...)
Food bank users are not impervious to the logic of setting money aside for hard times. But these are hard times for them. What the nation needs are bridge-builders with credibility in both camps to connect people, get them talking, show them there is common ground.
Canadians shouldn’t have to pick sides.

Source:
Toronto Star
http://www.thestar.com/

Anne Golden’s stern warning of growing rich-poor gap
http://www.thestar.com/opinion/editorialopinion/article/1280687
By Bob Hepburn
October 31, 2012
Anne Golden rarely pulls her punches.
So it shouldn’t have been a huge surprise when she took advantage of a dinner held in her honour to deliver a stern warning to a roomful of corporate bosses about the widening gap between the rich and poor in Toronto. Just as firmly, Golden told the business leaders that they’d better step up and do their part to help deal with the fast-growing gap or Toronto could face even greater problems in the coming years. For many executives, dire talk of pending doom for Toronto surely is familiar and they tune it out. But when Anne Golden speaks, they listen. That’s because Golden is someone they respect, a civic activist and city-builder with a well-deserved reputation for excellence, fairness, determination — and for tackling the tough issues.
(...)
Golden’s roots as a civic activist are deep. She became involved with the urban reform movement in Toronto in the 1960s and 1970s, joined the fight to stop the Spadina Expressway and gained national prominence for spearheading major reports on the Greater Toronto Area and homelessness.
(...)
Inequality also weakens the sense of community and social cohesion and contributes to more violence and crime, she adds.
(...)
When she was finished speaking, the CEOs gave Golden a standing ovation.

35 Comments about this article:
http://www.thestar.com/opinion/editorialopinion/article/1280687--anne-golden-s-stern-warning-of-growing-rich-poor-gap-hepburn#comments

Source:
Toronto Star
http://www.thestar.com/

From the
Broadbent Institute:

Canadians can challenge income inequality: new Broadbent Institute paper
http://www.broadbentinstitute.ca/en/blog/canadians-can-challenge-income-inequality-new-broadbent-institute-paper
October 8, 2012
News Release
By Mike Fancie
OTTAWA—Launching the next phase of its Equality Project, the Broadbent Institute has released a new discussion paper, “Towards a More Equal Canada”, which analyses the causes of, and proposes solutions to, income inequality. The paper follows the springtime publication of a Broadbent Institute-commissioned Environics poll on income inequality that shows Canadians overwhelmingly support taking action to alleviate our growing inequality problem.

The report:

Towards A More Equal Canada (PDF - 2.3MB, 26 pages)
http://www.broadbentinstitute.ca/sites/default/files/documents/towards_a_more_equal_canada.pdf
October 2012
This report is part of the Broadbent Institute’s Equality Project. Launched in the spring of 2012, the project includes a Broadbent Institute-commissioned Environics poll which showed a majority of Canadians support taking action to reduce inequality, a social media campaign, and an animated video.

You'll find the Equality Project at
http://www.broadbentinstitute.ca/en/project/equality-project

Source:
Broadbent Institute

http://www.broadbentinstitute.ca/
The Broadbent Institute seeks to equip the next generation of progressive thinkers and activists with the ideas and tools they need to build a more progressive Canada.

NOTE: James Mulvale of Basic Income Canada Network Canada [ http://biencanada.ca/ ] points out in an email that guaranteed annual income is discussed on page 21 of the Broadbent Institute report, as follows:

"We should consider the idea of a guaranteed minimum income. Tom Kent, the late social policy giant who was the architect behind the Pearson-era reforms that shaped modern Canada, left behind a plea to look at such an approach. Kent argued that we should design a system to ensure a reasonable level of income for every Canadian, building on the basic income guarantee we already provide to seniors. Support would be given in the form of regular payments to those with very low incomes, phased out with rising income reported via tax returns. He believed that the federal economies of scale would provide considerable efficiencies and reduce federal/provincial overlap and friction as provinces would focus on services (Kent 2011). Kent’s blueprints find supporters and detractors among both conservatives and progressives. There are significant issues of cost to be considered, as well as how to provide income support without discouraging work. Perhaps we could begin by providing a guaranteed income to persons with disabilities, including persons who are able to work but cannot do so on a continuing full-time basis."

Related links:

What kind of Canada do we want?
http://www.thestar.com/opinion/editorialopinion/article/1267780
October 8, 2012
By Ed Broadbent

Canada is in the process of destroying decades of progress. We are developing limited, American-style access to social programs, our employment insurance system is being slowly starved to death, tuition fees are skyrocketing — all in the name of “austerity.”
Is this the kind of Canada we want to leave to future generations?

56 Comments about this article
http://www.thestar.com/opinion/editorialopinion/article/1267780#comments

Source:
Toronto Star

http://www.thestar.com/

Income Inequality In Canada: Ed Broadbent Wants To Give Tories 'A Good Shake'
http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2012/10/09/income-inequality-canada-ed-broadbent_n_1949906.html
October 9, 2012
By Rachel Mendleson
Ed Broadbent has a novel idea for convincing Prime Minister Stephen Harper and other Conservative politicians to care about income inequality.
“I would like to take them all and give them a good shake, and take them back to talk to their parents or grandparents,” he said. As he envisions it, these heart-to-hearts would remind them of the fact that politicians of all stripes — including Conservatives — had a hand in helping to create Canada’s social welfare state. (...) Raising the profile of Canada’s growing rich-poor divide is top of mind for the former NDP leader and founder of the left-leaning Broadbent Institute, which is dedicated in large part to tackling rising income inequality. Speaking to The Huffington Post Canada in advance of the release of the think-tank’s latest report on the growing gap, Towards A More Equal Canada, Broadbent explained why income inequality “affects us all.”

Source:
Huffington Post Canada

http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/

CSLS Releases Two Reports on Happiness and Inequality and Redistribution in Canada
Ottawa - September 27, 2012
The Centre for the Study of Living Standards (CSLS) has released two reports of general interest. Today the CSLS released a report entitled The Impact of Redistribution on Income Inequality in Canada and the Provinces, 1981-2010 [See the link below.]. The objective of the study is to provide an overview of trends in income inequality, defined as the Gini coefficient, in Canada and the provinces over the 1981-2010 period and to investigate the impact of redistributive policies – namely, taxes and transfers – on these trends.

On September 25 (2012), the CSLS released a report entitled Canadians Are Happy and Getting Happier: An Overview of Life Satisfaction in Canada, 2003-2011 [See the link below]. The objective of the report is to provide an update and overview of trends in self-reported life satisfaction in Canada, based on data from Statistics Canada’s Canadian Community Health Survey.

The two reports:

The Impact of Redistribution on
Income Inequality in Canada and the Provinces, 1981-2010
(PDF - 836K, 50 pages)
http://www.csls.ca/reports/csls2012-08.pdf
By Andrew Sharpe and Evan Capeluck
September 2012
The objective of the study is to provide an overview of trends in income inequality, defined as the Gini coefficient, in Canada and the provinces over the 1981-2010 period and to investigate the impact of redistributive policies – namely, taxes and transfers – on these trends.

---

Canadians Are Happy and Getting Happier:
An Overview of Life Satisfaction in Canada, 2003-2011
(PDF - 588K, 17 pages)
http://www.csls.ca/notes/Note2012-3.pdf
By Andrew Sharpe and Evan Capeluck
September 2012
- In 2011 more than 9 out of 10 Canadians aged 12 and over (92.3 per cent) reported that they were satisfied or very satisfied with their lives.
- According to a Gallup World Poll taken in February 2012, Canada is the second happiest country in the world preceded only by Denmark.
- includes (in the References section at the end) links to nine reports for further reading...

Source:
Centre for the Study of Living Standards

http://www.csls.ca/
The Centre for the Study of Living Standards is a non-profit, national, independent organization that seeks to contribute to a better understanding of trends in and determinants of productivity, living standards and economic and social well-being through research.

Income Inequality and Redistribution
in Canada: 1976 to 2004
(PDF - 396K, 58 pages)
http://publications.gc.ca/collections/collection_2007/statcan/11F0019M/11F0019MIE2007298.pdf
By Andrew Heisz
May 2007
Using data from the 1976-to-1997 Survey of Consumer Finances and the 1993-to-2004 Survey of Labour and Income Dynamics, we examine developments in family income inequality, income polarization, relative low income, and income redistribution through the tax-transfer system. We conclude that family after-tax-income inequality was stable across the 1980s, but rose during the 1989-to-2004 period.
[Excerpt from the abstract]

Source:
Statistics Canada

http://www.statcan.gc.ca/start-debut-eng.html

Found in:

Publications Canada
http://publications.gc.ca/site/eng/home.html

Economic Inequality.ca Bulletin No. 9 — July 15th, 2012
This bulletin reports on the Public Meeting held on Tuesday June 26, in the City Council Chambers at Toronto City Hall.

Our meeting was entitled ‘Towards a More Equal Society: Getting the Details Right’ and it featured ten different speakers discussing a variety of topics to help address inequality. We believe this material provides an excellent agenda for change to create a more equal society. We thank each of our speakers for advancing these important issues.

NOTE: This is a Toronto-based group, and many of the presentations focus on Toronto and on Ontario, but there's information here that should be of interest to all social researchers regardless of the jurisdiction where they live.

Follow the links below to view the individual presentations that include both video and downloadable PDFs for your reference.

Alternatively, you can view all the session videos on our new YouTube channel:
http://www.youtube.com/user/EconomicInequality


1. Progressive taxes, Toby Sanger – Canadians for Tax Fairness
http://goo.gl/Ex1FY

2. Ontario child benefit, Laurel Rothman – Family Service Association
http://goo.gl/5nurv

3. Job security, minimum wages, Deena Ladd – Workers Action Centre
http://goo.gl/oHavJ

4. Racialization and economic inequality, Avvy Go – Colour of Poverty Campaign
http://goo.gl/JhPjl

5. Child care, Shani Halfon – Childcare Resource and Research Unit
http://goo.gl/jLwW9

6. Affordable housing, Michael Shapcott – Wellesley Institute
http://goo.gl/hpyFL

7. Gambling, Wayne Olson
http://goo.gl/8F08c

8. Income support and welfare, Jennefer Laidley – Income Security Action Centre
http://goo.gl/UfVv4

9. Health care, Doug Allan – Ontario Health Coalition
http://goo.gl/p118Y

10. Employment insurance, Laurell Ritchie – EI Working Group, Good Jobs Coalition
http://goo.gl/1Z1f9

11. Capital gains and inheritance tax, a report prepared by Walter Ross, but he was unable to attend.
http://goo.gl/nRoyd

[Earlier Bulletins in this series:
http://www.economicinequality.ca/category/updates/ ]

Source:
Economic Inequality.ca
http://www.economicinequality.ca/
Economic inequality is a big subject, and a lot of energy from a lot of people is needed to create more equality. Our organization is creating opportunities for public discussion of the kinds of policies we need and the kinds of actions (by us and by others) that are required.

Rich-poor gap is making Canadians sick
http://www.thestar.com/opinion/publiceditor/article/1226505
July 15, 2012
By Rob Rainer and Linda Silas
What does the Occupy movement have to do with the Council of the Federation? The growing gap between the rich and the poor is making people sick — literally. The Council of the Federation has an opportunity at its upcoming meeting July 25-27 in Halifax to commit to a co-ordinated plan of action to improve the health outcomes of Canadians, and in so doing address growing inequality. The top determinants of health in order are income status, education, social support networks, employment and working conditions, early childhood development, physical environment, personal health practices and coping skills and biological and genetic factors. Access to health care is ninth as a determinant of health.
(...)
By tackling each of the social determinants of health with intelligent public policy informed by evidence-based best practices, our governments will knock down Canada’s unconscionable poverty rates ranging from about 4 to 45 per cent or more, depending on the demographic group and measurement tool chosen.
(...)
By tackling the social determinants of health our governments can promote human capital, creativity and productivity while reducing health-care costs.
(...)
The great Dr. Norman Bethune believed that “the protection of the people’s health should be recognized by the government as its primary obligation and duty to its citizens.” In this spirit, when they meet soon in Halifax, Canada’s premiers can make health attainment the highest priority of their governments — and request the federal government do the same.

Rob Rainer is executive director of Canada Without Poverty [ http://www.cwp-csp.ca/ ].
Linda Silas is the president of the Canadian Federation of Nurses Unions [ http://www.nursesunions.ca/ ].

Source:
Toronto Star
http://www.thestar.com/

Related link:

World Health Organization Commission on Social Determinants of Health
http://www.who.int/social_determinants/en/

Income inequality
http://www.conferenceboard.ca/hcp/Details/society/income-inequality.aspx

Table of contents:
* Putting income inequality in context
* What does the Gini coefficient mean?
* How does Canada compare to its peers?
* Has Canada’s relative grade improved?
* Is there other evidence for growing income inequality in Canada?
* Why is income inequality increasing in Canada and peer countries?
* What’s the relationship between income inequality and economic growth?
* How do Canadians feel about income inequality?

Source:
How Canada Performs 2011 : A Report Card on Canada

http://www.conferenceboard.ca/hcp/default.aspx
Conference Board of Canada

http://www.conferenceboard.ca/
The Conference Board builds leadership capacity for a better Canada by creating and sharing insights on economic trends, public policy and organizational performance.

Tackling the income gap in Canadian cities
http://www.thestar.com/news/gta/article/1223391
July 8, 2012
By Laurie Monsebraaten
Toronto’s middle-class suburbs of the 1970s have turned into “urban deserts” of growing poverty while the city centre has become an enclave for the ultra rich.
But in the Montreal region, the suburbs are growing increasingly wealthy while poverty is spreading in the band of communities just outside the city’s historic downtown. Meantime, the wealthy suburbs of North and West Vancouver have grown richer while poverty has spread east and south of downtown since 1970.

What’s common for all three cities, however, is that the middle class is shrinking, notes University of Toronto researcher David Hulchanski, whose ground-breaking The Three Cities Within Toronto report in 2007 was the first to map Statistics Canada Census income data over time by neighbourhood. The new Montreal and Vancouver research, presented at U of T last week and not yet published, is part of a seven-year study of neighbourhood inequality in six Canadian cities that Hulchanski hopes will help explain why this is happening and what measures can halt or at least ease the 35-year-trend.

Calgary, Winnipeg, Halifax and the Greater Toronto Area are the other Canadian cities that will be examined in the study.

134 Comments about this article:
http://www.thestar.com/news/gta/article/1223391#comments

Source:
Toronto Star
http://www.thestar.com/

From Statistics Canada:

June 18, 2012
Income of Canadians, 2010
http://www.statcan.gc.ca/daily-quotidien/120618/dq120618b-eng.htm
Median after-tax income for families of two or more people amounted to $65,500 in 2010, virtually unchanged from 2009. This was the third consecutive year without significant change in after-tax income.
- includes links to three tables:
* Selected income concepts by main family types, 2009 and 2010
* Selected income concepts for economic families of two persons or more by province, 2010
* Percentage of persons in low income (1992 base after-tax income low income cut-offs)

Related link:

Income in Canada, 2010
http://www.statcan.gc.ca/pub/75-202-x/75-202-x2010000-eng.htm
Income in Canada is an annual analytical report which summarizes the economic well-being of Canadians. It includes an extensive collection of income statistics, covering topics such as income distribution, income tax, government transfers, and low income back to 1976.
- Click the links in the left margin pf the page to access Highlights - Analysis - Tables - Figures - more...

Free access to CANSIM Series tables:
http://goo.gl/b8KFr

Source:
Income in Canada - Product main page*
http://www5.statcan.gc.ca/bsolc/olc-cel/olc-cel?catno=75-202-X&lang=eng
The data prior to 1993 are drawn from the Survey of Consumer Finances (SCF). Beginning with 1998, the data are taken from the Survey of Labour and Income Dynamnics (SLID). For the 1993 to 1997 period, estimates are based on a combined sample from SCF and SLID. Income in Canada provides a complete list of the tables and directions for getting started. It also contains links to the background information on the survey, including content and methodology, and other SLID data products and services.
---
* On the product main page, click "View" to see the latest issue of this report online; click "Chronological index" for earlier issues (back to 1998).

---

- Go to the Social Statistics Links page:
http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/stats.htm

---

From Linda Lalonde
Co-chair, Ottawa Poverty Reduction Network:

Please see below for a motion on income equality that is before the House of Commons and goes to the vote on June 13th.
It may not change the world but it may get people talking about changing the world.

---

Bill M-315 : Motion to undertake a study on income inequality in Canada
The Hon. Scott Brison, Liberal MP for Kings-Hants, Nova Scotia, introduced a motion in April in the House of Commons, called M-315 on the issue of income inequality in Canada. We’d like to ask you to spread the word around and meet with your MPs, encouraging them to support this motion in a vote that’s coming up on June 13th, 2012, in the House.

Bill M-315 : Motion to undertake a study on income inequality in Canada
http://openparliament.ca/debates/2012/4/25/scott-brison-1/only/
April 25, 2012
This is the complete text of Mr. Brison's private member's motion.
Click the "see more" button in the bottom left corner of the yellow-ish text box to read the complete motion. Immediately following Mr. Brison's reading motion, you'll find statements
from members of all parties about the motion, including:
* Mark Adler
(Conservative)
* Dany Morin (NDP)
* Shelly Glover (Conservative)
* Peggy Nash (NDP)
* John McCallum
(Liberal)
* Cathy McLeod
(Conservative)
* Hoang Mai (NDP)

Thank you,
The Campaign 2000 Team at Family Service Toronto

Campaign 2000
http://www.campaign2000.ca/

Family Service Toronto
http://www.familyservicetoronto.org/index.html

Income inequality, by the numbers
http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2012/05/27/income-inequality-infographic_n_1548973.html
May 28, 2012
The Huffington Post features an infographic breaking down the details on the growth of income inequality in Canada between 1980 and 2009. Created by Ryerson University journalism student Jeff Fraser, the infographic draws on data from the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives.

Fraser also made a short video on the subject (duration 2:38):
http://vimeo.com/37532800

Source:
Growing Gap Project

http://www.policyalternatives.ca/projects/growing-gap

Growing Gap is a project of the
Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives:
http://www.policyalternatives.ca/

Related link:

Huffington Post Canada
http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/

The Three Amigos: How Income Inequality in Mexico is different than Canada and the U.S.
http://www.policyalternatives.ca/publications/reports/instability-implications-increasing-inequality
May 18, 2012
An examination of income inequality in North America reveals that Mexico is the only part of the continent where the middle class has been gaining from growth, according to a new study by internationally respected economist Lars Osberg, Dalhousie University professor and CCPA Research Associate.

Mexico’s middle class has benefited from urbanization, greater female employment, improved education and better social programs. Although similar trends in Canada and the U.S. maintained growth in middle class incomes until the 1970s, Osberg says, they have since run out of steam. Globalization, technological advances, a drop in unionized work, and a deregulated labour market have contributed to stagnant real incomes for most in Canada and the U.S. since the 1980s.

Meanwhile, income growth at the top has accelerated in both Canada and the U.S.

Read the full study:

Instability Implications of Increasing Inequality (PDF - 1.1MB, 40 pages)
http://goo.gl/eM92W
May 2012

See our infographic comparing the Three Amigos:
http://goo.gl/YzueY

News Release:
Mexico’s middle class gaining from economic
growth; Canada and the U.S. trailing
http://goo.gl/y5TwM

Source:
Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives
http://www.policyalternatives.ca/

EconomicInequality.ca
Bulletin No.7
May 2, 2012
http://www.economicinequality.ca/2012/05/03/bulletin-no-7-may-2nd-2012/
This Bulletin is published by the group that has created the web site Economic Inequality.ca, and has initiated a series of public meetings about what we can do about economic inequality in Canada. The Bulletin is published every few weeks to convey useful information about how we can change economic inequality.
Contents of this issue:
1. Act politically now for more equality
2. Understanding Bill 55, the budget legislation
3. We can have an impact

Links to all seven bulletins:
http://www.economicinequality.ca/category/updates/
Source:
Economic Inequality
http://www.economicinequality.ca/

Economic inequality is a big subject, and a lot of energy from a lot of people is needed to create more equality. Our organization is creating opportunities for public discussion of the kinds of policies we need and the kinds of actions (by us and by others) that are required.

From
Huffington Post Canada:

Mind the Gap : Chronicling Canada's Growing Rich-Poor Divide (special series)
http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/news/mind-the-gap
(...) An increasingly small share of people are taking up an increasingly large share of Canada’s impressive economic growth. Why is this happening? What can be done about it? Does it even matter? These are the questions we will focus on in The Huffington Post Canada’s Mind The Gap series, which over the coming months will tackle the issue of income inequality.

Selected recent site content:

Wealth And Traffic Accidents Study Shows
Poorer People Many Times More Likely To Be Hurt

http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2012/04/19/traffic-accidents-rich-poor_n_1438655.html
April 19, 2012
By Rachel Mendleson
MONTREAL - People living in poor neighbourhoods are more than six times as likely to be injured in a road accident as their wealthy counterparts, according to a new study published in the American Journal of Public Health.

---

Canada Income Inequality: Broadbent Institute Survey Shows
Vast Majority Wants Government To Do Something About The Wage Gap
http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2012/04/10/canada-income-inequality-survey-taxes_n_1415599.html
April 10, 2012
By Rachel Mendleson
The vast majority of Canadians are concerned about the growing gap between rich and poor, and are willing to pay higher taxes to fight it, a new poll shows. As the debate about income inequality intensifies, observers have often bemoaned that the causes and implications of this trend are too abstract to resonate with average Canadians. But the survey, released Tuesday by the Ottawa-based Broadbent Institute, indicates that most respondents believe that the deepening rich-poor divide could have a negative impact on everything from our standard of living to democratic principles.

---

So There's Income Inequality. Now What?
http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/rob-rainer/income-inequality_b_1242439.html
January 31, 2012
By Rob Rainer
(...) following an awareness breakthrough in 2011, public support and political interest for addressing inequality is apparent.
But what is to be done?
As the London-based Equality Trust states, there are two compatible options:
• Reduce the differences in employment income before tax; and
• Increase the redistribution of income through tax and benefit systems
(...)
In a country governed federally by a party ideologically wed to laissez-faire economics, and where in 2010 the average compensation for the 100 highest paid CEOs in Canada was 189 times that of the compensation of the average worker, neither option seems likely.
And so the more effective option for combating inequality is for governments to, first, rebuild greater fairness into our systems of taxation and, second, increase the distribution of income from the "top" to the "bottom." In 1948 there were 19 personal income tax brackets in Canada, and the top marginal tax rate was 80 per cent on incomes over $250,000 ($2.37 million in 2011 dollars). Today, we have but four brackets and the top rate is but 29 per cent, kicking in on earnings over $132,406.
The key to solving inequality seems pretty clear. Have we the public will now to support the political will for a fairer, better society?

Rob Rainer is Executive Director of Canada Without Poverty:
http://www.cwp-csp.ca/

---

Canada Income Inequality And The Decline Of Unions:
Have We Passed A Point Of No Return?

http://goo.gl/wNJMs
December 2011
By Rachel Mendleson
- includes a five-minute video, an article (with charts) and a slideshow examining the 10 fastest-shrinking sectors from 2004 to 2008, when the recession began.
Don't miss the 236 comments!

---

Source:
Huffington Post Canada
http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/

From the
Edmonton Social Planning Council:

The fACTivist: Income Inequality - March 2012
HTML version:

http://www.edmontonsocialplanning.ca/content/view/1139/276/
PDF version (36 pages, 6.4 MB):
http://goo.gl/HWI96
Winter Edition
March 2012

This edition of the Factivist examines the multifaceted and complex issue of "income inequality". The articles in this issue review how various groups in Canada and Alberta are affected by income inequality, how Alberta compares to other provinces, and different policy drivers that can reduce the income gap.

Foreword: Income Inequality
Income 101: Per Capita Wealth and Inequality
Comparison of Income Inequality in Other Canadian Provinces
Seniors and Poverty: Why Women are at Greater Risk
Income Inequality: Now and Then
What Comes Around, Goes Around: Income Inequality and Children
Income Inequality in Our Immigrant Community
Immigrant Earnings and Inequality
Why Does Income Inequality Matter? A Look at Vancouver
Growing Polarization of Income in Canada: Does Lack of Access to Higher Education Have a Hand in it?
Aboriginal Injustice
Income Inequality in Alberta and its Impacts on Albertan Women
Yes, In My Backyard
The Affordability Gap

Source:
Edmonton Social Planning Council

http://www.edmontonsocialplanning.ca

---

Canadians willing to pay higher taxes for equality
http://goo.gl/4cOlK
April 10, 2012
According to results of the first poll commissioned by a new left-leaning think tank, the majority of Canadians are concerned by the growing gulf between haves and have-nots, and they're willing to pay for change. The Environics Research survey commissioned by former NDP leader Ed Broadbent's eponymous institute was released Tuesday.
Source:
CTVNews.ca

Related link:

Broadbent Institute
http://www.broadbentinstitute.ca/
The Broadbent Institute is an idea realized in 2011 after years of percolating in the mind of Canadian politician and advocate, Ed Broadbent. Endorsed by Jack Layton and supporters from right across Canada, the Broadbent Institute is inspired by a common vision of free, equal, and compassionate citizenship in Canada – the very heart of what social democracy is about.

More info about the Broadbent Institute:
http://www.broadbentinstitute.ca/about

---

Related stories from CTVNews:

Economic equality an ongoing battle for women, prof says
http://goo.gl/W5YnD

Top CEOs got 189 times the average worker's pay in 2010
http://goo.gl/az7oq

Super-rich have already made an average yearly salary
http://goo.gl/NOiIm

OECD report finds income inequality rising in Canada
http://goo.gl/mn4Pi

Index finds inequalities in Canadians' quality of life
http://goo.gl/NDrM9

Source:
CTVNews.ca

From
Huffington Post Canada:

So There's Income Inequality. Now What?
http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/rob-rainer/income-inequality_b_1242439.html
By Rob Rainer
January 31, 2012
Spiked by public attention to the Occupy phenomenon, 2011 was the year in which the issue of income and wealth inequality mainstreamed in Canada. Witness: Bank of Canada Governor Mark Carney called the Occupy demonstrations "entirely constructive." Jeffrey Simpson, perhaps the land's top newspaper columnist, wrote about inequality. The Conference Board of Canada released a significant report. On January 6, Jeffrey Simpson wrote further to say that, "it's imperative that political actors put the issue front and centre on the national agenda." The NDP leadership race, at least, is embracing the challenge, for example Brian Topp's plan for federal tax reform.
So let's herald a little good news: Inequality is on the public and political radar.
---
Author Rob Rainer is of Canada Without Poverty
(formerly known as the National Antipoverty Organization):
http://www.cwp-csp.ca/

Source:
Huffington Post Canada

http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/

Related links from
Huffington Post Canada:

* Income inequality - The Conference Board of Canada
http://www.conferenceboard.ca/hcp/details/society/income-inequality.aspx

* Financial Security - Income Distribution / Indicators of Well-being in Canada
http://www4.hrsdc.gc.ca/.3ndic.1t.4r@-eng.jsp?iid=22

* Income inequality rising quickly in Canada - The Globe and Mail
http://goo.gl/lHKCz

* OECD report finds income inequality rising in Canada | CTV News
http://goo.gl/3WlPv

* Canada Income Inequality: Toronto's Cabbagetown A Prime Example Of Shrinking Middle Class
http://goo.gl/i4JLp

* Canada Income Inequality And The Decline Of Unions : Have We Passed A Point Of No Return?
http://goo.gl/wNJMs

Economic Inequality.ca Bulletin No. 1
http://goo.gl/nS4CF
January 27, 2012
This Bulletin is published by the group that has created the web site Economic Inequality.ca, and has initiated a series of public meetings about what we can do about economic inequality in Canada. The Bulletin is published every few weeks to convey useful information about how we can change economic inequality.
More than 325 people attended this group's first public forum on the subject of economic inequality on January 24 at Trinity St. Paul’s Centre in Toronto.
In this Bulletin, you'll find information about the two speakers, a summary of their presentations and the audience discussion that followed and some general thoughts on the meeting.
Source:
Economic Inequality
http://www.economicinequality.ca/

Economic inequality is a big subject, and a lot of energy from a lot of people is needed to create more equality. Our organization is creating opportunities for public discussion of the kinds of policies we need and the kinds of actions (by us and by others) that are required.

Growing income gap generates little blame, poll suggests
Canadians see large wealth disparities but few believe corporate profits are a bad thing

http://www.cbc.ca/news/business/story/2012/01/19/pol-focus-canada-environics-poll.html
January 19, 2012
Canadians continue to believe there's a significant income gap between the rich and the poor in their country, a new poll suggests. But there's no clear agreement on who's to blame for this perceived disparity. And only one Canadian in five thinks large corporate profits are bad. Highlights from the annual Focus Canada national public opinion survey by the Environics Institute were released at the Canada 2020 conference in Ottawa on Thursday afternoon. The full report will be available in March.

[ Comments (241):
http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/story/2012/01/19/pol-focus-canada-environics-poll.html#socialcomments ]

Related CBC Links:

* CHART | The wage gap in Canada
http://www.cbc.ca/news/interactives/canada-income/

* MAP | Income inequality around the globe
http://www.cbc.ca/news/interactives/income-inequality/

* Wealth gap widens to 30-year high
http://www.cbc.ca/news/business/story/2011/12/05/oecd-rich-poor-gap.html

* MAP | The Occupy Canada movement
http://www.cbc.ca/news/interactives/occupy-canada/

* ANALYSIS | Occupy Economics: Is the system broken?
http://www.cbc.ca/news/business/story/2011/10/17/f-pittis-occupy-economics.html

Source:
CBC News
http://www.cbc.ca/news/

Inequality rises across the G20 as economic growth leaves the poor behind
Strong economic growth since 1990 has failed to lift people out of poverty in almost every G20 country, according to a study by international agency Oxfam.

http://www.oxfam.ca/news-and-publications/news/inequality-rises-across-g20-economic-growth-leaves-poor-behind
News Release
18 January 2012
Left behind by the G20? shows the importance of policies to address inequality if growth is to benefit those living in poverty. (...) Since 1990, income inequality has increased in 14 of the 18 Group of 20 countries for which there are comparable statistics, says Oxfam’s report card. Inequality increased fastest in Russia, China, Japan and South Africa, with Canada following close behind.

The Oxfam report:

Left behind by the G20? How inequality and environmental degradation
threaten to exclude poor people from the benefits of economic growth
(PDF - 648K, 47 pages)
http://goo.gl/8x0qe
January 2012
Average global income per person has doubled over the last forty years.2 The proportion of the world’s population living in poverty has fallen significantly over the same period, but the absolute number remains high: 1.3 billion people still live on less than $1.25 a day. More than half of these women and men are in G20 countries. [Source : Introduction, p. 6]

Source:
Oxfam International
http://www.oxfam.org/
Oxfam is an international confederation of 15 organizations working together in over 90 countries and with partners and allies around the world to find lasting solutions to poverty and injustice.

See also:

Oxfam Canada
http://www.oxfam.ca/
Oxfam Canada is a member of the international confederation Oxfam. Oxfam has 15 national Oxfam agencies that together work in 92 countries. Oxfam Canada works with partner organizations in developing countries; tackling the root causes of poverty and inequity and helping people to create self-reliant and sustainable communities.

Oxfam Canada Annual Report 2011
http://www.oxfam.ca/news-and-publications/publications-and-reports/oxfam-canada-annual-report-2011
Accountability. It’s a commitment Oxfam takes very seriously – to our partners, to our donors, but most importantly, to women and men, girls and boys living in poverty.

Related link:

Poverty lingers in prosperous G20, Oxfam says
http://www.thestar.com/news/world/article/1117866
January 18, 2012
By Olivia Ward
The image of the G20’s rising giants is enticing: Chinese tourists trotting the globe, Indians lining up for electronic luxuries, Russian petrodollars fuelling designer boutiques. But the reality for many in the world’s most prosperous countries is far grimmer, says a report released Thursday by the international charity Oxfam. And economic growth numbers tell only a fraction of the story.
Source:
Toronto Star

http://www.thestar.com/

From the
Vancouver Sun:

A four-part special series on the growth of inequality in Canada by David Green, Thomas Lemieux, Kevin Milligan, Craig Riddell and Nicole Fortin (all professors of economics at the University of B.C.)

Putting numbers on inequality : Part 1
http://www.vancouversun.com/business/Putting+numbers+inequality+Part/5858241/story.html
December 20, 2011
The Occupy movement occupied a lot of political attention this fall in Vancouver. While it often seemed muddled in its goals, the one message that did come through was a concern with growing inequality.
The media has talked a lot about U.S. inequality trends, but we may be more concerned about what is happening in Canada. Digging into Canadian trends can point us to how, as a society, we ought to respond.

The top one per cent aren’t all financiers : Part 2
http://www.vancouversun.com/business/cent+aren+financiers+Part/5862175/story.html
December 20, 2011

The forces that are driving income inequality : Part 3
http://www.vancouversun.com/business/forces+that+driving+income+inequality+Part/5868143/story.html
December 20, 2011

Redressing inequality with taxes : Part 4
http://www.vancouversun.com/business/Redressing+inequality+with+taxes+Part/5876902/story.html

Source:
Vancouver Sun

http://www.vancouversun.com/

 

From the
Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives:

CEOs vs the 99%: No contest when it comes to pay
http://goo.gl/g4L4R
News Release
January 3, 2012
TORONTO—The highest paid 100 CEOs on Canada’s TSX Index had reason to cheer the New Year: By noon January 3, they had already pocketed $44,366 – what it takes the average wage earner an entire year to make.
The Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives’ (CCPA) annual look at CEO compensation reveals Canada’s Elite 100 CEOs pocketed an average $8.38 million in 2010 – a 27% increase over the average $6.6 million they took in 2009.

The first link below this box is to the CCPA report.

[Click anywhere in the above screen for a 40-second video from CCPA : The Clash for the Cash ]

NEW from the
Childcare Resource and Research Unit (CRRU):
http://www.childcarecanada.org

A historical snapshot of inequality in Canada
http://goo.gl/Vm4XX
6 Jan 2012
... a look back at the inequalities between various groups that have been constant themes in Canada; a universal system of high quality ECEC has a key role to play in addressing these inequities.

Canada's CEO Elite 100 : The 0.01% (PDF - 694K, 21 pages)
http://goo.gl/OenI0
By Hugh Mackenzie
January 3, 2012
Excerpt from p. 14:

Ed Broadbent, the originator of Canada’s commitment to end child poverty in 1989, has argued higher taxes on excessive compensation could provide the financial resources to fund a targeted plan to reduce, and potentially eliminate, the depth of poverty among Canadian families with children. But even without taking the step of raising taxes for Canada’s well-compensated CEOs, there is one simple thing Canada could do to curb CEOs’ enthusiasm—and their take-home pay. We could end the public subsidy of excessive CEO pay packages by getting rid of the loophole that allows the proceeds from cashing in stock options to be taxed as if they were capital gains—at half the normal rate—rather than as ordinary income.

Source:
Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives

http://www.policyalternatives.ca/
The CCPA is an independent, non-partisan research institute concerned with issues of social and economic justice.

-----------------------

Related links:

Richest CEOs earn 189 times average Canadian
Top 100 executives earned about $8.38M each in 2010

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/story/2012/01/03/business-ceo-pay.html
January 3, 2012
Source:
CBC News
http://www.cbc.ca/news/

---

Top Canadian CEOs got 27 per cent pay hike
http://www.thestar.com/business/article/1109514--highest-paid-canadian-ceos-got-27-per-cent-pay-hike
January 2, 2012
By noon on Tuesday, Jan. 3, the highest-paid chief executives officers in Canada will have earned as much as the average Canadian makes in an entire year, according to a new report.
The top 100 Canadian CEOs were paid an average of $8.4 million in 2010, a 27 per cent increase over the previous year, the report published Tuesday by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives says. In comparison, the average Canadian earned $44,366 that year, or 1.1 per cent more than in 2009, the report called Canada’s CEO Elite 100 notes.
Source:
Toronto Star
http://www.thestar.com/

---

- Go to the Banks and Business Links page:
http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/bookmrk3.htm

From the
Caledon Institute of Social Policy:

Reducing Income Disparities and Polarization (PDF - 388K, 33 pages)
http://goo.gl/DB8Fu
- includes the three following contributions:
* Why Canadians Should Care About Income Inequality - by Mark Cameron
* Income Distribution in Canada - by Andrew Sharpe
* Inequality Is Not Inevitable - by Sherri Torjman and Ken Battle

Source:
The Canada We Want in 2020:
Towards a strategic policy roadmap for the federal government
http://canada2020.ca/canada-we-want/

Source:
Canada 2020
http://canada2020.ca/

From
Huffington Post Canada:
http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/

Canada Income Inequality: Living In Unequal Cities A Health Risk To Rich And Poor, Study Finds
http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2011/11/28/canada-income-inequality-health-risk_n_1109923.html
November 28, 2011
As Canada’s rich-poor divide deepens, critics often point to the tome of research linking income inequality and poor health in countries like the United States as proof that, if unchecked, the growing gap could quite literally make us sick.
But new evidence brings the warning much closer to home. Looking exclusively at the Canadian-born population, a pioneering study has found that the income differential is already having an adverse effect on the health of residents in cities with the widest gap, increasing the likelihood of succumbing to everything from alcohol abuse to colorectal cancer – regardless of individual income.

Income Gap Leads To Health Problems For Montrealers
http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2011/11/28/income-inequality-montreal-life-expectancy_n_1117148.html
November 28, 2011

Socio-economic inequality continues to have a profound impact on health and access to services in Montreal, including subsidized daycare, according to a new report by the city's public health agency.
The report released Monday highlights the gap between rich and poor when it comes to life expectancy and health.

The report:

Inégalités sociales de santé
http://www.dsp.santemontreal.qc.ca/media/dossiers_de_presse/inegalites_sociales_de_sante.html

NOTE: As at December 1, the above link will take you to the French page for this report and related links. There is a notation that "the complete English version will be available shortly." Currently on the site, there is an English version of the synthesis report (see the next link below).

Social Inequalities in Montréal : Progress to Date
2011 Report of the Director of Public Health
Synthesis Report
(PDF - 7.5MB, 40 pages)
http://www.dsp.santemontreal.qc.ca/fileadmin/documents/4_Espace_media/Dossiers_de_presse/iss/en_rapport_synthese_2011_final.pdf

Director of Public Health (English home page):
http://www.dsp.santemontreal.qc.ca/english_version.html
NOTE: With the exception of a few reports and press releases, there's not much content en anglais on this site. I find it bizarre that in Canada's largest and arguably most cosmopolitan city, the government can't find the resources to make everything available in both official languages. This criticism isn't directed at Montreal City Hall --- the website belongs to the Government of Québec. And here's the Québec government's rationale, copied from the English home page of this site: "As health professionals practicing in Quebec are required to have good command of the French language, this site is in French."
[The language police have spoken.]

---------------------------

Version française:

Inégalités sociales de santé
En 1998, le premier rapport annuel de la Direction de santé publique de Montréal faisait état d’une différence de dix ans entre l’espérance de vie moyenne des hommes des quartiers montréalais défavorisés par rapport à leurs concitoyens des quartiers riches. Une décennie s’est écoulée depuis ce premier portrait de l’état de santé des Montréalais et le temps est maintenant venu de mesurer le chemin parcouru. Les inégalités sociales de santé sont donc au cœur du rapport 2011 du directeur de santé publique.
- liens vers le rapport complet, le rapport synthèse, un résumé, un communiqué de presse et une présentation Powerpoint de la conférence de presse

Source:
Directeur de santé publique de Montréal (page d'accueil en français)
http://www.dsp.santemontreal.qc.ca/

Inequality Facts in BC (from Raise the Rates)
Source:
Raise the Rates


Occupy Wall Street

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Occupy Wall Street is an ongoing series of demonstrations in New York City[ based in Zuccotti Park, formerly "Liberty Plaza Park". The protest was originally called for by the Canadian activist group Adbusters. The action has been compared to the Arab Spring movement (particularly the Tahrir Square protests in Cairo, which initiated the 2011 Egyptian revolution) and the Spanish Indignants.
The participants of the event, who have called themselves the "99 percenters", are mainly protesting against social and economic inequality, corporate greed, and the influence of corporate money and lobbyists on government, among other concerns. By October 9, similar demonstrations had been held or were ongoing in 70 major cities and more than 600 communities.

We are the 99 percent
We are the 99 percent. We are getting kicked out of our homes. We are forced to choose between groceries and rent. We are denied quality medical care. We are suffering from environmental pollution. We are working long hours for little pay and no rights, if we're working at all. We are getting nothing while the other 1 percent is getting everything. We are the 99 percent.

Occupy Wall St.
OccupyWallSt.org is the unofficial de facto online resource for the ongoing protests happening on Wall Street. We are an affinity group committed to doing technical support work for resistance movements.

OCCUPY TOGETHER is an unofficial hub for all of the events springing up across the country in solidarity with Occupy Wall St.

The Occupy Protests - a Toronto Star special feature with news about the Canadian, U.S. and international Occupy movements

Occupy Canada Facebook page - In solidarity with #OccupyWallStreet, @OccupyToronto, and the countless other @Occupy movements across the world.

---

Occupying the Lange and O’Leary Exchange
By Armine Yalnizyan
November 3, 2011
Starting today I will be on a regular weekly biz panel for the Lang and O’Leary show, every Thursday night. The panel will take on two six minute segments to discuss the big economic stories of the day. Today’s proposed topics – the Eurozone mess, whither Canada’s GDP, is Occupy a media invention/will it hold without media attention, upcoming job market numbers. A cool opportunity to bring a progressive perspective into perhaps the most neoliberal — and watched — Punch and Judy show in the business news universe, at least in English-speaking Canada.
The show airs daily on CBC News Network, between 7 and 8 p.m.
The biz panel segment will be in the second half of the show, after 7:30.
Source:
Progressive Economics Forum

---

From the CBC:

Lang and O'Leary Exchange : November 3, 2011 (video, duration 59:27)
TIP: If you really can't stomach the blowhard O'Leary, click and drag the video status bar to the 34-minute mark to catch Armine's panel segment, including her friendly observation that if Kevin loves the U.S. so much, he should consider moving there. (Yay, Armine --- I'm thinking of starting an online petition to muster some support for that!)

You can watch the show each weeknight from 7-8pm on the CBC News Network, or (over the coming weeks) go to the
Lang & O'Leary Exchange website and click on the links to the Thursday shows, above for the first segment involving Armine,
who is senior economist with the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives

---

Occupy Wall Street: Reining in the rich
Will tighter financial rules even the playing field?

By Alex Roslin
November 5, 2011
MONTREAL (...)The eight-week-old Occupy Wall St. movement has highlighted mounting anger at a financial system that allowed out-of-control bankers to plunge the global economy into its worst downturn since the Depression, only to bail them out with billions in taxpayer money while they rewarded themselves outlandish bonuses. Some commentators say the answer is tighter financial rules and an end to billion-dollar bank bailouts. But would this make the economy fairer? Would it get the protesters to put down their signs and go home?
(...)
In Canada, income inequality is by some measures the worst it’s ever been in 90 years of recorded history, worse even than at its previous peak in the Roaring Twenties, said Armine Yalnizyan, a senior economist at the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives.
“The system is concentrating wealth in fewer and fewer hands. It’s not a sustainable trajectory,” she said. In a study last December, Yalnizyan found that the richest one per cent of Canadians capture a whopping 32 per cent of all income growth.
Source:
Montreal Gazette

---

How does Canada’s 1% compare to other countries?
October 14, 2011
In light of Occupy Wall Street and the spin­offs that are growing in many other cities, there have been a large number of excellent articles and studies going around looking at the top 1% of income earners in the United States. What is Canada’s place in this debate, and what is the conventional wisdom regarding Canada as an equal society?
- includes three charts:
* Richest 1% of population : share of national income
* How much more of the income pie di the highest 1% get over the past 25 years
* Median Total Income for each income group in 5% increments
- scroll down past the charts for half a dozen links to further readings on the subject

Source:
reWORKit.net
Web productions for unions and social change

---

Five Facts You Should Know About the Wealthiest One Percent of Americans
It may shock you to learn exactly how wealthy this top 1 percent of Americans is.

October 4, 2011
As the ongoing occupation of Wall Street by hundreds of protesters enters its third week — and as protests spread to other cities such as Boston and Los Angeles — demonstrators have endorsed a new slogan: “We are the 99 percent.” This slogan refers to an economic struggle between 99 percent of Americans and the richest 1 percent of Americans, who are increasingly accumulating a greater share of the national wealth to the detriment of the middle class.

Just the Facts:
1. The Top 1 Percent of Americans Owns 40 Percent of the Nation’s Wealth
2. The Top 1 Percent of Americans Take Home 24 Percent of National Income
3. The Top 1 Percent Of Americans Own Half of the Country’s Stocks, Bonds and Mutual Funds
4. The Top 1 Percent Of Americans Have Only 5 Percent of the Nation’s Personal Debt
5. The Top 1 Percent are Taking In More of the Nation’s Income Than at Any Other Time Since the 1920s

Source:
AlterNet
AlterNet is an award-winning news magazine and online community that creates original journalism and amplifies the best of hundreds of other independent media sources. AlterNet’s aim is to inspire action and advocacy on the environment, human rights and civil liberties, social justice, media, health care issues, and more.

Related links:

We are the 99 percent
We are the 99 percent. We are getting kicked out of our homes. We are forced to choose between groceries and rent. We are denied quality medical care. We are suffering from environmental pollution. We are working long hours for little pay and no rights, if we're working at all. We are getting nothing while the other 1 percent is getting everything. We are the 99 percent.

Occupy Wall St.
OccupyWallSt.org is the unofficial de facto online resource for the ongoing protests happening on Wall Street. We are an affinity group committed to doing technical support work for resistance movements.

OCCUPY TOGETHER is an unofficial hub for all of the events springing up across the country in solidarity with Occupy Wall St.

---

- Go to the Inequality Links page:
http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/inequality.htm

Rising tide not lifting all boats (video, duration 5:53)
September 30, 2011
The income gap in Canada has been widening since the 1990s -- and now it’s growing at a faster pace than in the United States. Armine Yalnizyan, Senior Economist at the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives, tells BNN a growing income gap is particularly worrying because happened during a period of strong economic growth.
Source:
Business News Network

 
More at The Real News

Rich Getting Richer In Ontario
September 28, 2011

Hugh Mackenzie: "From 1992 to 2007, 90% of the income gain in Canada went to the top 1% while their effective tax rate went down."

Video, duration 16:12

When business talks about inequality, it’s time to worry
By Armine Yalnizyan
September 27, 2011
The world is marking the third anniversary of the biggest global economic crisis since the 1930s by staring down the imminent possibility of a second global downturn. Virtually none of the conditions that triggered the first one have been addressed.
(...)
It is in business’ interests to reduce inequality, but short-term gains eclipse the long-term view for too many. Governments have less excuse. Their job is not to save the rich and lose the economy. It is to think forward, to implement public policy that benefits the majority, sustainably, and reverses this relentless trend towards growing inequality.
At the very least, governments shouldn’t make things worse.
NOTE: this article includes several links to related material from the Conference Board of Canada, the International Monetary Fund and others.

[ 73 comments ]

Armine Yalnizyan is a senior economist with the
Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives

More Globe and Mail articles
about income inequality in Canada:

* Income inequality rising quickly in Canada (September 13)
* Taxing high earners: Five key points for the debate
(September 21)
* Taxing the rich may be fair, but it won’t fill the coffers
(September 19)

Source:
Globe and Mail

Inequality is bad for business
By Armine Yalnizyan
September 15, 2011
In August Canadian Business magazine published my article on why inequality is bad for business.
[ http://www.canadianbusiness.com/article/39123--inequality-is-bad-for-business ]

Last week the International Monetary Fund, not known for left-leaning views, released a series of articles entitled “Why Inequality Throws Us Off Balance”.
[ http://www.imf.org/external/pubs/ft/fandd/2011/09/index.htm ]

One of the papers is by Andrew Berg and Jonathan Ostry entitled “Equality and Efficiency: Is there a trade-off or do the two go hand in hand?
http://www.imf.org/external/pubs/ft/fandd/2011/09/Berg.htm

A few months earlier they had written a provocative piece “Inequality and Unsustainable Growth” documenting how lower inequality is linked to more sustained periods of growth….and that higher inequality means more volatility.
http://www.imf.org/external/pubs/ft/sdn/2011/sdn1108.pdf

Yesterday the Conference Board of Canada released its second report on income inequality, looking at trends in income inequality internationally, between and within nations. It follows an earlier report on trends in income inequality in Canada. These authoritative pieces of research are funded by 25 big businesses and one government.
http://www.conferenceboard.ca/hcp/hot-topics/worldInequality.aspx

From the
Conference Board of Canada:

Hot Topic: World Income Inequality
Is the world becoming more unequal?
September 2011

Key Messages:
* Of total world income, 42 per cent goes to those who make up the richest 10 per cent of the world’s population, while just 1 per cent goes to those who make up the poorest 10 per cent.
* Income inequality among countries in the world rose sharply between the 1980s and the mid-1990s, before levelling off and then falling after 2000.
* Countries with very high inequality are clustered in South America and southern Africa. Countries with low inequality are mostly in Europe. Canada and the U.S. have medium income inequality.
* The increase in income inequality has been more rapid in Canada than in the U.S. since the mid-1990s.

Click the link above to access the following
collection of information in question-and-answer format:

Is world income inequality increasing?
How do we define a “rich” country? How do we define a “poor” country?
How do we measure world income inequality?
Method 1: Is there an income gap between rich and poor countries? Has the gap increased?
Method 2: Has world income inequality increased? If so, why?
Method 3: Are there large gaps between rich and poor people within each country? Are these gaps increasing?
What is happening to income inequality in Canada and its peer countries?
Why has income inequality increased in the United States?
Why is income inequality rising in China?
Has there been income inequality throughout history?
Is your income level determined by where you live?

See also:
Canadian Income Inequality
July 2011

Source:
Conference Board of Canada

Related links:

Record poverty last year as household income dips
Median household income declines; families ‘doubled up’

September 13, 2011
WASHINGTON — A record number of people were in poverty last year as households saw their income decrease, according to data from the Census Bureau Tuesday, demonstrating the weakness of the economy even after the official end of the recession.
The 46.2 million people in poverty in 2010 was the most for the 52 years that estimates have been published, and the number of people in poverty rose for the fourth consecutive year as the poverty rate climbed to 15.1% — the highest since 1993 — up from 14.3% in 2009.
Source:
MarketWatch
MarketWatch, published by Dow Jones & Co., tracks the pulse of markets for engaged investors with more than 16 million visitors per month.

Income inequality rising quickly in Canada
Tavia Grant
September 13, 2011
The gap between the rich and the rest is growing ever wider -- with the chasm increasing at a faster pace in Canada than in the United States.
That’s the conclusion of a Conference Board of Canada study Tuesday, which says income inequality has been rising more rapidly in Canada than in the U.S. since the mid-1990s.

[ 661 comments ]

Source:
Globe and Mail

Related Globe and Mail articles:

* We're ignoring inequality at our peril
* Does hike in minimum wage cut poverty? Findings say no
* Nearly 1 in 6 Americans live in poverty: Census

Our self-image needs a reality check
September 15, 2011
By Carol Goard
We’re closing the gap — and it’s nothing to be proud of.
For generations, we have taken comfort in the belief that we live in a more equitable country than the United States. Globally, Canada might be in the middle of the pack, but compared to our American neighbours, we are a compassionate people. Our rich-poor divide might be widening, but it is modest relative to theirs. A new report from the Conference Board of Canada shatters that myth. Since the mid-1990s, income inequality has been rising faster in Canada than the U.S. They’re still in top spot, but we’re catching up. Our Gini index, which measures income equality, rose by 9 per cent over the last decade. Theirs increased by 4.7 per cent.
(...)
There are two policy levers Canada could use to counter the trend of the last decade:
• We could make our tax system more progressive. (...)
• We could strengthen our social programs. What differentiated Canada from the U.S. for most of our history was our sturdy safety nets. They protected us in times of adversity, caught people before they fell into destitution and gave everyone a measure of security against the risk of illness and a precipitous drop in income. But over the last 30 years Ottawa has switched to narrowly targeted benefits and the provinces have become tight-fisted. The wealthy are largely unaffected; the poor are more exposed to market forces.
B
ut both options are non-starters in Ottawa. The Harper government is calling on low- and middle-income Canadians to tighten their belts while it lowers corporate tax rates. The provinces are dismantling their disparity-fighting mechanisms. And there is no public pressure for a change of direction. Canada was never a land of equal opportunity, although we clung to that self-image. Now we can’t escape the truth: We’re galloping in the opposite direction, outpacing even the U.S.
Source:
Toronto Star

Fault Lines: The Top 1% (YouTube video, duration 25:00)
Aug 2, 2011
The richest 1% of US Americans earn nearly a quarter of the country's income and control an astonishing 40% of its wealth. Inequality in the US is more extreme than it's been in almost a century — and the gap between the super rich and the poor and middle class people has widened drastically over the last 30 years. Meanwhile, in Washington, a bitter partisan debate over how to cut deficit spending and reduce the US' 14.3 trillion dollar debt is underway.
Source:
Fault Lines
[ Aljazeera English ]

You Oughta Know: Canada's Income Gap,
the Richest 20% vs the Poorest 20%
(online slideshow)
July 18, 2011
The income gap between the rich and the rest of us has worsened over the past generation. In 2009, during the dark days of Canada's recession, the richest 20% of Canadians took home a whopping 44.2% of total after-tax income -- in stark contrast to the poorest 20% whose after-tax income share was only 4.9%. What did the gap look like in your province? This You Oughta Know slideshow tells the story.
Source:
Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives

Canada’s income gap growing
July 13, 2011
By Laurie Monsebraaten
Income inequality in Canada is widening as the rich get richer and poor and middle-income Canadians lose ground, says the Conference Board of Canada in a report being released Wednesday. (...) The 33-year trend which has accelerated since 1993, raises questions about the country’s economic well-being, including whether Canada is using all the skills and talents of its citizens and whether social cohesion and fairness are being undermined, says How Canada Performs: Is Canada becoming more unequal?

[ Comments (44) ]

Source:
Toronto Star

From the
Conference Board of Canada:

How Canada Performs: A Report Card on Canada
This website—How Canada Performs: A Report Card on Canada—assesses Canada’s quality of life compared with that of its peer countries. The 2008–09 financial crisis and resulting global recession caused massive turbulence in the major Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) economies, making it hard to draw meaningful conclusions from the preliminary data from that period. While we wait for actual post-recession data to be released later this year so we can update the six performance category report cards, we are releasing a series of 10 “hot topic” analyses.
[NOTE : "Canada Inequality" is one of the 10 hot topics.]

Rich Canadians Are Getting Richer
New release
July 13, 2011 — The richest group of Canadians increased their share of total national income while poor and middle-income individuals lost ground since 1993, according to The Conference Board of Canada’s How Canada Performs analysis of income inequality. Even though income levels for the poorest group of Canadians also rose, albeit minimally, the gap between the rich and poor in Canada widened.

Hot Topic: Canada Inequality
Is Canada becoming more unequal?
July 2011
Key Messages:
* Income inequality in Canada has increased over the past 20 years.
* The richest group of Canadians increased its share of total national income between 1993 and 2008, while the poorest group lost share. Middle-income Canadians also lost share.
* Although the gap between the rich and poor widened, Canadians in the poorest income group still saw their income levels rise, albeit minimally.
NOTE: includes detailed information and stats related to inequality in question-and-answer format; also includes links to other related Conference Board articles and to outside source material.

[ See all Hot Topics ]

Source:
Conference Board of Canada

Rising CEO Pay: Could it fuel social unrest? (three-part video, see links below)
June 1, 2011
BNN (Business News Network) has taken on the thorny topic of soaring CEO pay in Canada. Two former CEOs joined CCPA Senior Economist Armine Yalnizyan for a discussion about CEO pay and came to agreement on three important points: Executive compensation has gotten out of line; workers at the bottom and middle of the income spectrum need a boost, and higher taxes on the richest Canadians is the easiest solution to this worsening inequality.
Source:
Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA)
The CCPA is an independent, non-partisan research institute concerned with issues of social and economic justice.

Income inequality : three-part video
(The average income of a top-100 CEO is 155 times the average income of the workers in those same industries. Discuss.)

* Income Inequality - (part one of the video) (Duration 9:46)
* Income Inequality - (part two of the video) (Duration 8:22)
* Income inequality - (part three of the video) (Duration 4:45)
[ By Gilles : You *rock*, Armine! ]

Related BNN link:

What is fair compensation for CEOs
and how should that be determined?
(three-part video, see links below)
May 30, 2011
BNN speaks to Janet McFarland, reporter, Globe and Mail; Paul Gryglewicz, Managing Partner, Global Governance Advisors; Courtney Pratt, former CEO of Stelco.

Fair compensation : three-part video
* Compensation Study - (part one of the video) (Duration 9:26)
* Compensation Study - (part two of the video)
(Duration 8:14)
* Compensation Study - (part three of the video)
(Duration 5:15)
Source:
Business News Network

Related link:

Who earned what last year, and why?
By Janet McFarland
May. 29, 2011 (updated May. 31, 2011)
Canada’s biggest companies have made strides in linking CEO pay to performance, but the effort remains a work in progress in many boardrooms.
A new tool - Pay for performance: How Canada’s CEOs stack up - developed by Toronto-based executive pay consulting firm Global Governance Advisors shows that the link between pay and performance varies significantly, with some companies disclosing above-average CEO compensation and below-average performance in 2010.
Source:
Globe and Mail

The Economic Well-Being of Canadians:
Is there a Growing Gap?
(PDF - 842K, 58 pages)
By Chris Sarlo
May 2009
(...) Public attitudes about inequality, arguably influenced by media attention, are such that a significant majority of Canadians believe that the gap between the rich and the poor is growing. (...)
This paper has two purposes. First and principally it is a critical examination of the evidence for a "growing gap" in Canada. The paper will attempt to look at inequality in a somewhat broader context than is customary. Evidence drawn largely from household-spending data files as well as from household facility-ownership data and household net-worth data can shed additional light on the trend in inequality for Canada. Second, the paper will examine the issue of data reliability in the context of the measurement of inequality.
Source:
The Fraser Institute
Motto: A free and prosperous world through choice, markets and responsibility

Growing Income Inequality in OECD Countries:
What Drives It and How Can Policy Tackle It?
(PDF - 751K, 14 pages)
May 2011
Table of contents:
The overall picture: inequality on the rise in most OECD countries
--- Trends in income inequality
--- Where is the increasing income inequality coming from: wages, employment or capital incomes?
What drives growing earnings and income disparities?
--- How important are globalisation, technological change and regulatory reform for inequality?
--- Does it matter for inequality whether rich men marry rich women?
--- Have income taxes and benefit systems become less successful in redistributing income?
Which lessons for policies?

Issue paper on Tackling Inequality (PDF - 224K, 4 pages)
May 2011

Source:
OECD Forum on Tackling Inequality (PARIS)
[ Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) ]

[ More on OECD research on Income Distribution and Poverty ]

---

Related links:

From the
Wellesley Institute

‘Scary’ income inequality on rise in Canada and other rich economies: New OECD report
May. 6, 2011
Research from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) released earlier this week indicates that income inequality continues to grow rapidly in Canada and in most of the world’s other rich economies. The research points to an international trend where economic growth only translates into growth in household income for the wealthiest in society and doesn’t serve to benefit household incomes of everyone.

From the
Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA):

February 2011 : Inequality
February 1, 2011
[ PDF version - 67K, 1 page ]
Excerpts:
===> $6.6 million = The average compensation of Canada’s best-paid 100 CEOs in 2009.
===> $42,988 = The average wage for Canadians working full-time, year-round.
===> 155 times = How much the best-paid 100 CEOs earn more than average wage.
===> 0 = The number of women among the best-paid 100 CEOs in Canada in 2009.
===> 20th = Canada ranks 20th, behind the U.S., in a global ranking of women’s equality

Source:
The Hennessy Index- "A number is never just a number"
[Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA)
The CCPA is an independent, non-partisan research institute concerned with issues of social and economic justice.]

------------------------------------------

Income inequality bad for everyone: Richard Wilkinson (video, duration 7:52)
December 17, 2010
The Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA) was pleased to co-sponsor a three-city lecture tour featuring Richard Wilkinson, co-author of the best selling book The Spirit Level, which examines income inequality among developed nations. During his stop in Toronto, he sat down with the CCPA's Trish Hennessy to talk about the book.


Related link:

The Spirit Level from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
The costs of inequality:
* Community life and social relations
* Mental health and drug use
* Physical health and life expectancy
* Obesity: wider income gaps, wider waists
* Educational performance
* Teenage births: recycling deprivation
* Violence: gaining respect
* Imprisonment and punishment
* Social mobility: unequal opportunities

The Spirit Level:
Why Greater Equality Makes Societies Stronger
By Kate Pickett and Richard Wilkinson
January 2010
- more information about the book ($28) and where to buy it, as well as links to 17 reviews, commentaries and blog posts.
Source:
Bloomsbury Press

Also from CCPA:

Richest 1% income shares at historic high
News Release
December 1, 2010
TORONTO – Canada’s richest 1% are taking more of the gains from economic growth than ever before in recorded history, says a report by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA). The Rise of Canada’s Richest 1% looks at income trends over the past 90 years and reveals the 246,000 privileged few who rank among the country’s richest 1% took almost a third (32%) of all growth in incomes between 1997 and 2007. That's a bigger piece of the action than any other generation of rich Canadians has taken,” says Armine Yalnizyan, CCPA senior economist and the report’s author.

Complete report:

The Rise of Canada's Richest 1% (PDF - 739K, 22 pages)
By Armine Yalnizyan
December 2010
(...) Combine record-breaking growth in incomes with historically low top tax rates, and the richest 1% is taking a bigger piece of the economic pie today than at any time in the past century. The report also touches on the concentration of wealth, but 2005 was the last time Statistics Canada examined the distribution of wealth in Canada, a study it has no plans to repeat. A recent private sector study shows that by the end of 2009, 3.8% of Canadian households controlled $1.78 trillion dollars of financial wealth, or 67% of the total. [Excerpt from p. 4]

Related link:

The rich really are getting richer
By Joe Friesen
December 1, 2010
The super rich are, in one respect, not that different from ordinary Canadians: they work for their money. It’s just that they’re rewarded at a rate most people only dream of. The top 0.01 per cent of Canadian income earners, the 2,400 people who earn at least $1.85-million, aren’t just basking in investment income and business profits. Nearly 75 per cent of their income comes from wages, just like the average Canadian, according to a new study from the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives
[ The rewards of the rich - infographic ]
[ 146 comments ]
Source:
Globe and Mail

---

Source:
Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA)
The CCPA is an independent, non-partisan research institute concerned with issues of social and economic justice.

Poverty Profile 2007: Bulletin No. 10 - Income Inequality
October 2010
How is income distributed in Canada? In our bulletin on income inequality, we examine how Canada compares to other countries. We also look at trends in income inequality for Canadian families.
Source:
National Council of Welfare

Soft landing for Canada’s CEOs
News Release
January 4, 2010
TORONTO—Canadians may have been hit hard by a worldwide economic recession, but it appears Canada’s 100 highest paid CEOs are enjoying a soft landing. A report on executive compensation by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA), a progressive think tank, reveals Canada’s 100 highest paid CEOs pocketed an average $7.3 million in 2008, the year recession broadsided the nation.

A Soft Landing:
Recession and Canada’s 100 Highest Paid CEOs
(PDF - 432K, 17 pages)
By Hugh Mackenzie
January 4, 2010
"...the total average compensation for Canada's 100 highest paid CEOs was $7,352,895 in 2008—a stark contrast from the total average Canadian income of $42,305. They pocketed what takes Canadians earning an average income an entire year to make by 1:01 pm January 4—the first working day of the year."

Source:
Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives

The welfare asset trap
October 21 2009
It is well known that when the Conservatives came to power in 1995 Mike Harris gutted welfare rates – leaving needy Ontarians living far below the poverty line. Less well known is that changes were also made to force Ontarians to divest themselves of almost every cent of savings, including cashable RRSPs, before they could qualify for a welfare cheque. In a report to be released Oct. 21, Metcalf Foundation fellow John Stapleton presents a compelling case for allowing welfare recipients to keep some savings. (...) Asset-stripping is just one of the failings of our outdated and mean-spirited social assistance system. The government's promised social assistance review – still waiting to be launched – will find many other hurdles in the path of those in need of a helping hand.
Source:
The Toronto Star

Open Policy - John Stapleton's website

Québec:

Taking the Measure of Poverty, Proposed indicators of poverty,
inequality and social exclusion to measure progress in Québec:
Advice to the Minister
(PDF - 311K, 80 pages)
Centre for the study of poverty and exclusion
2009 (file dated September 21/09)
Source:
Centre d’étude sur la pauvreté et l’exclusion (English home page)
The Centre d’étude sur la pauvreté et l’exclusion (CEPE) is an observation, research and discussion centre entrusted with providing reliable and rigourous information, notably of a statistical nature, on poverty and social exclusion issues. (...) One of the main mandates of the CEPE is to develop and recommend to the Minister a series of indicators to be used in measuring poverty and social exclusion and social and economic disparities, as well as other indicators of poverty.


Income inequality
September 2009
Key Messages:
* Canada gets a “C” grade and ranks 12th out of 17 peer countries.
* A significant increase in income inequality occurred in Canada between 2000 and 2006.
* The empirical research results regarding the trade-off between income inequality and economic growth are inconclusive.
On the home page, you'll find all of the following information:
--- Interactive map
--- Putting income inequality in context
--- What does the Gini coefficient mean?
--- How does Canada compare to its peers?
--- Has Canada’s relative grade improved?
--- Is there other evidence for growing income inequality in Canada?
--- Why is income inequality increasing in Canada and its peer countries?
--- What’s the relationship between income inequality and economic growth?
--- How do Canadians feel about income inequality?
Source:
The Conference Board of Canada

Affordability gap between rich and poor
Press Release
September 23, 2009
OTTAWA – There is a major affordability gap between Canada’s richest and poorest households, says a new Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives study released today. The Affordability Gap: Spending Differences Between Canada’s Rich and Poor reveals how Canada’s poorest households often forego buying things most Canadians consider essential, from eyeglasses and dental care to computers and newspapers. (...) The study looks at new data from Statistics Canada on how households spent their money in 2007 – one of the best years for gains in personal income in recent history. It finds Canada’s poorest households are much less likely to buy sporting equipment for themselves or their children. They often don’t spend money on eyeglasses, dental care and home furnishings. They often don’t have cell phones, personal computers and high-speed Internet access. Even going to a movie or buying a newspaper can be a rare treat.

The Affordability Gap:
Spending differences between Canada's rich and poor
(PDF - 396K, 17 pages)
September 2009
By Steve Kerstetter
"(...)Much of the recent research on poverty talks about social exclusion or social inclusion as the best way of defining poverty. Poverty, according to this view, isn’t strictly a matter of very low income. It is also based on whether people are able to participate in a meaningful way in the society around them. In other words, can poor people purchase the goods and services that most people would consider reasonable for normal living in 21st century Canada? The latest spending data suggest the answer to that question is no.

Source:
Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA)
The Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives is an independent, non-partisan research institute concerned with issues of social and economic justice. Founded in 1980, the CCPA is one of Canada’s leading progressive voices in public policy debates.

Related media coverage:

Poor households in a world `far removed'
Forget cellphones, poorest can't afford life's basics, and the recession has only made their plight worse
September 24, 2009
By Rita Trichur
The poorest Canadians are struggling to pay for life's necessities, forcing them to do without such everyday basics as eyeglasses, dental care and furniture – and the recession has only made their plight worse, says a major think-tank. In a study to be released today, the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives paints a disturbing picture of how the poor are unable to afford many of the goods and services that most Canadians consider "reasonable for normal living" in modern society.
Source:
Toronto Star

A brief history of pensions.
Pay attention because you may be about to lose yours

August 1, 2009
By Thomas Walkom
The drive to dismantle the welfare state has a new target. Governments have already gutted unemployment insurance and social assistance. Out-of-date labour laws make it tough to organize unions in the new, decentralized, service-based economy. Now, thanks in large part to the dynamics of the recession, pensions are under attack. (...) Even before this recession hit, it was clear that pensions were under the gun. Good retirement benefits, like good wages, interfere with what economists call labour market flexibility – that is, the willingness of workers to take low-wage jobs.
Source:
The Toronto Star

Why Inequality Matters in 1,000 Words or Less (PDF - 398K, 32 pages)
April 28, 2008
Why Inequality Matters in 1,000 Words or Less is powerful essay series by some of Canada’s leading thinkers on income inequality. The contributors to this essay series come from all kinds of academic backgrounds. Though all the contributors are distinguished and well-respected for their academic work, they are not of like mind. They have differing ideological starting points and differing intellectual approaches. But they agree on this: Income inequality is a problem that should be addressed, right here in Canada. They warn that income inequality and persistent poverty could have serious and adverse effects on our nation. In this series we present the opinions of four economists—Lars Osberg, Charles Beach, Jon Kesselman and David Green; a political scientist— Michael Orsini; a sociologist—John Myles; a philosopher—Frank Cunningham.

Why Inequality Matters: Presentation to the Canadian Labour Congress Convention (PDF - 106K, 6 pages)
May 27, 2008
By Armine Yalnizyan
"(...) Unions are [also] looking at poverty through new lenses — not just the importance of improving inadequate incomes, but the necessity of affordability for basics like housing, child care, education, to make sure we are all set on the right path in life.

Two days, two reports, two very different worlds
June 29, 2007
The World Wealth Report 2007 released on Wednesday by Merrill Lynch and Capgemini reports that the very rich (so-called high net worth individuals – HNWI) are getting even richer. And the forecast is the extremely wealthy are going to get even richer due to their dominance of global capital markets, especially commercial real estate and real estate investment trusts. Meanwhile, the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives released a detailed research report on Thursday called Rising Profit Shares, Falling Wage Shares which shows that real hourly wages for workers (the people that do things, rather than own things) “have been stagnant for 30 years running”.The two studies make fascinating reading, when set side-by-side...
Source:
The Wellesley Institute Blog
[ The Wellesley Institute ]

Canada’s growing gap at new 30-year high
Majority of families working harder, less payoff
Press Release
March 1, 2007
TORONTO – Canadian families are putting in more work time, yet most – 80% of them – are getting a smaller share of Canada’s growing economy, says a study by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA).The study finds Canada’s income gap between the rich and poor is growing, largely because the lion’s share of Canada’s economic growth is going to the richest 10% of families. It’s not going to the majority, the 80% of families earning under a $100,000.

The Rich and the Rest of Us:
The Changing Face of Canada's Growing Gap
- PDF File, 613K, 54 pages)
By Armine Yalnizyan
March 2007

November 20, 2006
GROWING GAP,
GROWING CONCERNS:
Canadian Attitudes Toward Income Inequality
(PDF file - 1MB, 14 pages)
"(...)while many Canadians think that the “rags to riches” story is possible to achieve in Canada, half say that they themselves are only one or two missed pay-cheques away from economic disaster."

Source:
Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA)

Poverty Is Not Just About Income – It’s Also About Assets (PDF file - 64K, 4 pages)
Notes for a Presentation to the conference: "Investing in Self-Sufficiency: Moving the Asset-Building Agenda Forward in B.C."
Coquitlam, British Columbia, October 21-22, 2004
By Cynthia Williams, Senior Research Fellow
Source:
[ Canadian Policy Research Networks ]

Income Inequality as a Determinant of Health
April 6, 2004
A report on population health by Health Canada, based on papers and presentations by CCSD's Katherine Scott.

Wealth Inequality in Canada

[ Jump directly to U.S. wealth inequality links (lower down on the page you're now reading ]

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From the
Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives:

Outrageous Fortune:
Documenting Canada's Wealth Gap
(PDF - 619K, 22 pages)
https://www.policyalternatives.ca/sites/default/files/uploads/publications/National%20Office/2014/04/Outrageous_Fortune.pdf
By David Macdonald
April 3, 2014
This report examines the details of Statistics Canada's wealth survey and finds that wealth inequality trends have quietly gone unnoticed—and in fact, Canada's wealth gap is bigger than its income gap. The report also provides an analysis of the 86 wealthiest Canadian residents, finding that they held the same amount of wealth in 2012 as the bottom 11.4 million Canadians combined. The paper concludes by examining a few options to help narrow Canada’s wealth gap, including reforms to capital gains tax and a higher inclusion rate/higher income taxes at the top of Canada’s income spectrum.

Outrageous Fortune:
Communiqué en français
https://www.policyalternatives.ca/newsroom/news-releases/les-86-résidents-les-plus-riches-du-canada-pourraient-acheter-le-nouveau
[L'étude complète est disponible en anglais seulement.]
Le 3 avril 2014

Source:
Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA)
https://www.policyalternatives.ca/

Related link:

Canada's mammoth wealth gap in 3 easy charts
http://www.pressprogress.ca/en/post/canadas-mammoth-wealth-gap-3-easy-charts
April 3, 2014

Source:
PressProgress

http://www.pressprogress.ca/

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Wealth Inequality: Going from bad to (net) worth
http://behindthenumbers.ca/2014/02/26/wealth-inequality-going-from-bad-to-net-worth/
February 26, 2014
By David Macdonald
Yesterday, Statistics Canada [ http://www.statcan.gc.ca/ ] released its 2012 wealth survey (Survey of Financial Security : http://goo.gl/fgpT8z ). Two previous wealth surveys were published in 2005 and 1999 with a similar methodology. We often talk about income inequality, which examines what middle class and rich Canadians make in a year. However, wealth inequality examines middle class and rich Canadians’ net worth, including their house, RRSPs, savings, car, etc. If income inequality—where the top 20% of families get 43% of the income— is concerning, then wealth inequality should be downright shocking. The top 20% of families in Canada own 67% of all net wealth (although this is down slightly from the high of 69% of all wealth in 2005).

Related posts:

• The Financial Wealth of Canada’s Top 1% (October 24, 2011, by Marc Lee)
http://behindthenumbers.ca/2011/10/24/the-financial-wealth-of-canadas-top-1/

• Wealth and income in the top 1% ( October 20, 2011, by Marc Lee)
http://behindthenumbers.ca/2011/10/20/wealth-and-income-in-the-top-1/

• Dispelling Middle-class Myths (April 26, 2011, by Armine Yalnizyan)
http://behindthenumbers.ca/2011/04/26/dispelling-middle-class-myths/

• Toronto-Centre: Ground Zero for Canada’s Income Inequality Debate (November 19, 2013, by Trish Hennessy)
http://behindthenumbers.ca/2013/11/19/toronto-centre-ground-zero-for-canadas-income-inequality-debate/

• Atlantic Canada’s story of inequality (January 30, 2013, by Christine Saulnier)
http://behindthenumbers.ca/2013/01/30/atlantic-canadas-story-of-inequality/

Source:
Behind the Numbers : A Blog from the CCPA
http://behindthenumbers.ca/
Behind The Numbers delivers timely, progressive commentary on issues that affect Canadians, including the economy, poverty, inequality, climate change, budgets, taxes, public services, employment and much more.

Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA)
https://www.policyalternatives.ca/
The Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives is an independent, non-partisan research institute concerned with issues of social, economic and environmental justice

Found on
the StatCan Blog:
http://www.statcan.gc.ca/interaction/eng

March 20, 2013
Measuring wealth
http://www.statcan.gc.ca/interaction/eng/blog-blogue/cs-sc/measuring-wealth
In fall 2012, some 20,000 households across Canada were asked to open their doors to Statistics Canada interviewers, and share details of their financial lives, assets, debts, income, and pensions as part of the
Survey of Financial Security
:
http://www23.statcan.gc.ca/imdb/p2SV.pl?Function=getSurvey&SDDS=2620&lang=en&db=imdb&adm=8&dis=2

Table : Assets and debts held by family units, total amounts : 2012
http://www.statcan.gc.ca/interaction/eng/blog-blogue/cs-sc/wealth-tbl1
This survey provides information of the net worth (wealth) of Canadian families, that is, the value of their assets less their debts.
- includes national figures for 1999 and 2005, along with a column showing the changes during that same period.

Pension and Wealth Research Paper Series
http://www5.statcan.gc.ca/bsolc/olc-cel/olc-cel?catno=13F0026M&chropg=1&lang=eng

Related subjects:

* Income, pensions, spending and wealth
http://www5.statcan.gc.ca/subject-sujet/result-resultat.action?pid=3868&id=3868&lang=eng&type=DAILYART

* Household assets, debts and wealth
http://www5.statcan.gc.ca/subject-sujet/result-resultat.action?pid=3868&id=1989&lang=eng&type=DAILYART

* Household spending and savings
http://www5.statcan.gc.ca/subject-sujet/result-resultat.action?pid=3868&id=2180&lang=eng&type=DAILYART

The Distribution of Wealth: Implications for the Neo Liberal Justification for Economic Inequality
http://www.broadbentinstitute.ca/en/blog/andrew-jackson-distribution-wealth-implications-neo-liberal-justification-economic-inequality
January 23, 2013
By Andrew Jackson
(...)
[W]ealth, especially financial wealth, is highly concentrated in Canada and produces a significant source of income and economic well-being for the rich which is not earned in the same sense as income from wages and salaries. At a minimum, inequality of financial wealth reinforces inequality of income, and bequests of wealth between generations can be very large. This is hard to justify on the normative grounds used by neo liberals to justify economic inequality, namely that individual rewards reflect the productive contributions of individuals. Accordingly, it is not “unfair” to consider taxation of inheritances and large accumulations of wealth or to reflect on other means to reduce large concentrations of private wealth.

Andrew Jackson is the Senior Policy Advisor at the Broadbent Institute, and Packer Visiting Professor of Social Justice at York University.

Source:
Broadbent Institute
http://www.broadbentinstitute.ca/

Also from Statistics Canada:

June 22, 2012
Study: The evolution of wealth over the life cycle, 1977 to 2005
http://www.statcan.gc.ca/daily-quotidien/120622/dq120622c-eng.htm
The net worth accumulated by Canadians as they reached their late 30s to early 50s varied little from one generation to another. However, the process by which individuals built their wealth differed between generations. This was because recent generations accumulated higher levels of both assets and debt than earlier ones. This study uses survey data covering the assets and debts of Canadians to follow the accumulation of wealth by several generations as they progress through the life cycle. The term 'wealth' refers to net worth, or net assets, expressed in 2010 constant dollars.

The study:

The evolution of wealth over the life cycle
By Amélie Lafrance and Sébastien LaRochelle-Côté
HTML version:
http://www.statcan.gc.ca/pub/75-001-x/2012003/article/11690-eng.htm
PDF version (180K, 16 pages):
http://www.statcan.gc.ca/pub/75-001-x/2012003/article/11690-eng.pdf
---
TIP: If you're thinking of checking out the dozens of links to related studies and resources embedded in the text of this study, I'd recommend the HTML version, where you can click through to the related resources directly; in the PDF version, you have to copy each link and paste it into your browser to access the file.
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This study uses a series of cross-sectional surveys to estimate the wealth accumulation process from the young adult years (ages 28 to 34) to the near-retirement period (ages 56 to 62) for three successive cohorts of Canadians who entered adulthood in 1977, 1984 and 1999.

Table of contents of this study:
* The wealth accumulation process
* Wealth among young adults
* Evolution of wealth over the life cycle
* Debt-to-income and debt-to-assets ratio
* Dispersion measures
* Conclusion
* Imputing pension assets for the 1977 and 1984 samples
* Data source and definitions

Source:
Perspectives on Labour and Income - product main page*
http://www.statcan.gc.ca/bsolc/olc-cel/olc-cel?catno=75-001-X&lang=eng
This publication brings together and analyzes a wide range of labour and income data. Topics include youth in the labour market, pensions and retirement, work arrangements, education and training, and trends in family income.
[ * On the product main page, click "View" to see the latest issue of this report online; click "Chronological index" for earlier issues. ]

Related subjects:

* Income, pensions, spending and wealth
http://www5.statcan.gc.ca/subject-sujet/result-resultat.action?pid=3868&id=3868&lang=eng&type=DAILYART

* Household assets, debts and wealth
http://www5.statcan.gc.ca/subject-sujet/result-resultat.action?pid=3868&id=1989&lang=eng&type=DAILYART

* Household spending and savings
http://www5.statcan.gc.ca/subject-sujet/result-resultat.action?pid=3868&id=2180&lang=eng&type=DAILYART

* Household, family and personal income
http://www5.statcan.gc.ca/subject-sujet/result-resultat.action?pid=3868&id=2812&lang=eng&type=DAILYART

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Source:
The Daily

http://www.statcan.gc.ca/dai-quo/index-eng.htm
[Statistics Canada
http://www.statcan.gc.ca/start-debut-eng.html ]

The Rise of Canada's Richest 1% (PDF - 739K, 22 pages)
By Armine Yalnizyan
December 2010
(...) Combine record-breaking growth in incomes with historically low top tax rates, and the richest 1% is taking a bigger piece of the economic pie today than at any time in the past century. The report also touches on the concentration of wealth, but 2005 was the last time Statistics Canada examined the distribution of wealth in Canada, a study it has no plans to repeat. A recent private sector study shows that by the end of 2009, 3.8% of Canadian households controlled $1.78 trillion dollars of financial wealth, or 67% of the total. [Excerpt from p. 4]
Source:
Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA)


Changes in Household Net Worth in Canada: 1990-2009
(PDF - 1.4MB, 10 pages)
Research Highlight
October 2010
This Research Highlight reviews changes from 1990 to 2009 in the assets, debts, and wealth of Canadian households. It examines the contribution of real estate to the net worth of Canadians and shows that the gap between the wealth of homeowners and renters has been widening. It finds that the collective net worth of households doubled, household debts grew faster than disposable incomes, and falling interest rates reduced debt servicing costs.

[ More 2010 Research Highlights - links to 20+ reports PLUS links (in left margin) to reports for earlier years ]

Source:
Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

June 7, 2010
Homeownership over the Life Course of Canadians:
Evidence from Canadian Censuses of Population

June 2010
By Feng Hou
Table of contents:
1. Acknowledgements
2. Abstract
3. Executive summary
4. Main article
5. Tables
6. Charts
7. Appendices
8. User information
9. PDF version (524K, 32 pages)

Source:
The Daily
[Statistics Canada]

Wealth, income inequality rising: Study
Press Release
April 28, 2008
TORONTO – Canada’s inequality in wealth and income is growing, and at a more rapid pace than before, says a new study released by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA). The study, by economist Lars Osberg, looks at 25 years of income and wealth inequality in Canada and finds disturbing new trends.

Complete report:

A Quarter Century of Economic
Inequality in Canada: 1981-2006
(PDF - 995K, 46 pages)
By Lars Osberg
April 2008

Source:
[ Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives ]

Related links:

Wealth gap exposes fresh labour challenge
By Michael Valpy
April 26, 2008
The final 2006 census data will portray the richest 5 per cent of Canadians as dramatically accumulating more wealth, the incomes of most residents showing perhaps the greatest stagnancy in the developed world and the nation's poorest falling further and further behind. Immigrants and Canada's native-born youngest male adults will be identified as the prime victims of a 25-year trend in widening income inequality – an inequality some economists believe reflects systemic long-term changes to the labour market rather than transitional bumps in demographics and swings in the business cycle. The data to be released Thursday by Statistics Canada will show median incomes falling for immigrants and native-born 18-to-34-year-old males who compete directly for the same entry level jobs that are increasingly characterized as low-pay, unstable and short term.
Source:
The Globe and Mail

Wealth, Low-Wage Work and Welfare:
The Unintended Costs of Provincial Needs-tests
(PDF - 604K, 8 pages)
April 2008
"(...)Assets do matter as an important, but so far largely undervalued, factor in well-being. Assets are more than stored-up income, they are stored-up hope, agency and aspiration. To the degree that welfare policy is ultimately concerned with well-being - and we believe it is - far greater attention should be paid to assets." (Excerpt, p.7)
- includes detailed info on what constitutes assets in the Canadian welfare system as well as asset exemption levels in all Canadian jurisdictions and a number of options for provincial/territorial governments wishing to promote greater asset development within their welfare program.

Source:
Asset-building Program
[ Social and Enterprise Development Innovations (SEDI)
SEDI is are a national charitable organization dedicated to enabling poor and unemployed Canadians become self-sufficient. We take a variety of leading-edge social and economic approaches to this goal in areas such as policy development, program management, capacity building, public education, and research.]

A Surge in Wealth Inequality
December 14, 2006
Posted by Andrew Jackson
"There was a fair amount of media coverage of the new data on assets and debt from the 2005 Survey of Financial Security released by Stats Can last week (...) Slightly buried in the new paper is evidence that wealth inequality is increasing at an even faster rate than was the case in the 1990s, and that the distribution is becoming ever more skewed to the very affluent.

Source:
Relentlessly Progressive Economics

Related Link:

December 13, 2006
Study: Inequality in wealth, 1984 to 2005
The gap between the nation's families with the highest net worth and those with the lowest widened between 1999 and 2005, in part because of gains in the value of housing, a new study shows.The study, published today in Perspectives on Labour and Income, ranked family units into five groups, or quintiles, from the lowest net worth to the highest. Each represented 20%, or one-fifth, of all families. Between 1999 and 2005, the median net worth of families in the top fifth of the wealth distribution increased by 19%, while the net worth of their counterparts in the bottom fifth remained virtually unchanged.

Source:
Statistics Canada

Also from StatCan:

Assets and debts
- links to 6 studies on the assets and debts of Canada's families in 2006
Source:
Canadian Statistics

The evolution of wealth inequality in Canada, 1984-1999 (PDF - 432K, 59 pages)
November 2003
By R. Morissette, X. Zhang and M. Drolet
"
Our main findings are as follows: 1) Wealth inequality has increased between 1984 and 1999; 2) the growth in wealth inequality has been associated with substantial declines in real average and median wealth for recent immigrants and young couples with children; 3) real median wealth and real average wealth rose much more among families whose major income recipient is a university graduate than among other families; 4) real median and average wealth fell among families whose major income recipient is aged 25–34 and increased among those whose major income recipient is aged 55 and over; 5) the aging of the Canadian population over the 1984–1999 period has tended to reduce wealth inequality; 6) changes in permanent income do not explain a substantial portion of the growing gap between low-wealth and high-wealth families. Factors that may have contributed to rising wealth inequality—which cannot be quantified with existing data sets—include differences in the growth of inheritances, inter vivos transfers, rates of return on savings and number of years worked full-time. In particular, rates of return on savings may have increased more for wealthy family units than for their poorer counterparts as a result of the booming stock market during the 1990s."
Source:
The Levy Economics Institute
Annandale-on-Hudson (New York)

A year earlier, on the same topic:

Rags and Riches: Wealth Inequality in Canada
December 2002
by Steve Kerstetter (CCPA-BC)
"Canadians may view their country as a land of opportunity, but it is also a land of deep and abiding inequality in its distribution of personal wealth. This is the key conclusion of Rags and Riches: Wealth Inequality in Canada, a new CCPA study by social policy analyst Steve Kerstetter, a former Director of the National Council on Welfare.The study features data never before published about the very richest and very poorest Canadians. It draws on special data runs commissioned from StatsCan by the CCPA to provide extensive new analysis on the distribution and characteristics of wealth dating back to 1970 for each of five regions of the country."
Complete report:
Rags and Riches: Wealth Inequality in Canada - PDF File, 362 Kb
(See the
* Appendix A: Wealth Groups by Region, 1999 - PDF File, 138 Kb
* Appendix B: Assets and Debts by Region and Quintile, 1999 - PDF File, 298 Kb
* Appendix C: Markers for Wealth by Region, 1999 - PDF File, 149 Kb
* Appendix D: Assets and Debts by Province, 1984 and 1999 - PDF File, 166 Kb
* Upstairs, Downstairs and in Between: The Assets and Debts of British Columbians - PDF File, 74 Kb
* Where's the Beef in BC's Fiscal Plan? - PDF File, 74 Kb
* BC Home to Greatest Wealth Gap in Canada - PDF File, 83 Kb
* BC's Bountiful Crop of Millionaires - PDF File, 86 Kb

Source:
Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives




U.S. / International links ( added to this page are in reverse chronological order, for the most part)

United States

New from
TalkPoverty.org:

http://talkpoverty.org/

Solutions to Fight Economic Inequality:
How to dramatically reduce poverty and inequality in America

http://talkpoverty.org/2015/06/10/solutions-economic-inequality/
June 10, 2015
With a majority of Americans [ http://goo.gl/LZ170l ] now concerned about wealth and income inequality in our country, TalkPoverty is launching a new feature, “10 Solutions to Fight Economic Inequality." We asked experts to use this list by economist Tim Smeeding (see the next link below) as a sample and to offer their ideas on how to dramatically reduce poverty and inequality in America.

Tim Smeeding on how to reduce income inequality
http://lanekenworthy.net/2015/05/25/tim-smeeding-on-how-to-reduce-income-inequality/
May 25, 2015

More solutions:

Jared Bernstein’s Top 10 to Address Economic Inequality
http://talkpoverty.org/2015/06/10/solutions-economic-inequality/#Jared Bernstein

Melissa Boteach and Rebecca Vallas: Top 10 Policy Solutions for Tackling Income Inequality and Reducing Poverty in America
http://talkpoverty.org/2015/06/10/solutions-economic-inequality/#Melissa Boteach

Olivia Golden: Policies to Reduce Income Inequality
http://talkpoverty.org/2015/06/10/solutions-economic-inequality/#Olivia Golden

Kali Grant and Indivar Dutta-Gupta: Ten Ways to Fight Income Inequality
http://talkpoverty.org/2015/06/10/solutions-economic-inequality/#Kali Grant Indivar Dutta-Gupta

Erica Williams: What States Can Do to Address Inequality
http://talkpoverty.org/2015/06/10/solutions-economic-inequality/#Erica Williams

Valerie Wilson: Top 10 Ways to Address Income Inequality
http://talkpoverty.org/2015/06/10/solutions-economic-inequality/#Valerie Wilson

The income gap between bosses and workers is getting even bigger worldwide
http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/on-leadership/wp/2015/03/13/the-income-gap-between-bosses-and-workers-is-getting-even-bigger-worldwide/
By Jena McGregor
March 13, 2015
Income inequality has become a hot-button political issue in the United States. The size of Wall Street bonuses has been compared against the median household income. More and more companies are upping the pay of minimum-wage workers amid growing protests. And someday soon, companies are expected to be required to disclose the ratio of pay between CEOs and their median employees.
- includes a chart showing changes in pay disparity in 63 countries [including Canada] between 2008 and 2014.

Source:
Washington Post
http://www.washingtonpost.com/

From the
International Monetary Fund (IMF):
http://www.imf.org/

Power from the People
HTML version : http://www.imf.org/external/pubs/ft/fandd/2015/03/jaumotte.htm
PDF version (small PDF file, 3 pages) : http://www.imf.org/external/pubs/ft/fandd/2015/03/pdf/jaumotte.pdf
By Florence Jaumotte and Carolina Osorio Buitron
March 2015
The decline in unionization in recent decades has fed the rise in incomes at the top.
Inequality has risen in many advanced economies since the 1980s, largely because of the concentration of incomes at the top of the distribution. Measures of inequality have increased substantially, but the most striking development is the large and continuous increase in the share of total income garnered by the 10 percent of the population that earns the most—which is only partially captured by the more traditional measure of inequality, the Gini coefficient.

Source:
International Monetary Fund (IMF):

http://www.imf.org/
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) is an organization of 188 countries, working to foster global monetary cooperation, secure financial stability, facilitate international trade, promote high employment and sustainable economic growth, and reduce poverty around the world.

---

Related link
from PressProgress:

Rise of income inequality is linked to decline of unions: new IMF study
http://www.pressprogress.ca/en/post/rise-income-inequality-linked-decline-unions-new-imf-study
Unions have been given their due by the International Monetary Fund.
Income inequality rises when unionization declines, according to a new global analysis of advanced economies -- including Canada.
March 2, 2015

Source:
PressProgress
http://www.pressprogress.ca/
PressProgress advances progressive solutions and challenges conservative ideas with hard-hitting news and analysis. PressProgress is a project of the Broadbent Institute [ http://www.broadbentinstitute.ca/ ].

---

Related links from the
Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives:

The staying power of unions
https://www.policyalternatives.ca/publications/monitor/essay-staying-power-unions
By Trish Hennessy
November 1, 2014

Labour unions in the 21st century?
https://www.policyalternatives.ca/publications/monitor/labour-unions-21st-century
By Jordan Brennan
September 1, 2014
Excerpt:
"The legitimacy of North American labour unions is being called into question. Surveying the continental scene, we find conservative politicians in multiple jurisdictions attacking union security. But as the most recent Ontario election results suggest, the Tim Hudak-style attack on organized labour can easily backfire. Here’s why: despite all the anti-union rhetoric these days, unions and collective bargaining are a crucial ingredient in in the formation and maintenance of a shared prosperity. - See more at: https://www.policyalternatives.ca/publications/monitor/labour-unions-21st-century"

Source:
Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives:

https://www.policyalternatives.ca/
The Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives is an independent, non-partisan research institute concerned with issues of social, economic and environmental justice. Founded in 1980, the CCPA is one of Canada’s leading progressive voices in public policy debates.

Nine Charts about Wealth Inequality in America
http://datatools.urban.org/Features/wealth-inequality-charts/
Why hasn’t wealth inequality improved over the past 50 years? And why, in particular, has the racial wealth gap not closed? These nine charts illustrate how income inequality, earnings gaps, homeownership rates, retirement savings, student loan debt, and lopsided asset-building subsidies have contributed to these growing wealth disparities.

Nine charts:

1. Wealth inequality is growing
2. One reason for rising wealth inequality is income inequality
3. Racial and ethnic wealth disparities are also growing
4. The racial wealth gap grows sharply with age
5. Differences in earnings add up over a lifetime and widen the racial wealth gap
6. African Americans and Hispanics lag behind on major wealth-building measures, like homeownership
7. African American and Hispanic families have less in liquid retirement savings
8. African American families carry more student loan debt than white families
9. Federal policies fail to promote asset building by lower-income families

Source:
Urban Institute
http://www.urban.org/
The Urban Institute's mission is "to open minds, shape decisions, and offer solutions through economic and social policy research. We believe in the power of evidence to improve lives and strengthen communities.

Latest Urban Institute Reports
http://www.urban.org/toolkit/newreports.cfm

The Effect of Rising Inequality on Social Security
https://www.americanprogress.org/issues/economy/report/2015/02/10/106373/the-effect-of-rising-inequality-on-social-security/
By Rebecca Vallas, Christian E. Weller, Rachel West, Jackie Odum
February 10, 2015
Social Security has become a core component of retirement security in the United States: Nearly two-thirds of seniors rely on the program’s benefits for most of their income. Year after year, Social Security serves as our nation’s most effective anti-poverty program; in 2012, it kept more than 22 million Americans out of poverty.

Source:
Center for American Progress
https://www.americanprogress.org/
The Center for American Progress is an independent nonpartisan educational institute dedicated to improving the lives of Americans through progressive ideas and action.

From
The Guardian (U.K.):

New Oxfam report says half of global wealth held by the 1%
Oxfam warns of widening inequality gap, days ahead of Davos economic summit in Switzerland
http://www.theguardian.com/business/2015/jan/19/global-wealth-oxfam-inequality-davos-economic-summit-switzerland
January 19, 2015
Billionaires and politicians gathering in Switzerland this week [ for the annual meeting of the World Economic Forum - see the link below] will come under pressure to tackle rising inequality after a study found that – on current trends – by next year, 1% of the world’s population will own more wealth than the other 99%.

Source:
The Guardian
http://www.theguardian.com/

------------------------------------------------------

From
OXFAM International:

Wealth: Having it all and wanting more
http://policy-practice.oxfam.org.uk/publications/wealth-having-it-all-and-wanting-more-338125
19 Jan 2015
By Deborah Hardoon
12 pages
Global wealth is increasingly concentrated in the hands of a small wealthy elite. These wealthy individuals have generated and sustained their vast riches through their interests and activities in a few important economic sectors, including finance and insurance, and pharmaceuticals and healthcare.
(...)
This briefing explains Oxfam’s methodology and data sources and updates key inequality statistics, such as Oxfam’s frequently cited fact in 2014: ‘85 billionaires have the same wealth as the bottom half of the world’s population’.

Complete briefing:

English (PDF - 248KB, 12 pages):
http://oxfamilibrary.openrepository.com/oxfam/bitstream/10546/338125/8/ib-wealth-having-all-wanting-more-190115-en.pdf
.
English Excel data file:
http://oxfamilibrary.openrepository.com/oxfam/bitstream/10546/338125/9/ib-data-wealth-having-all-wanting-more-190115-en.xlsx

Press release
http://www.oxfam.org/en/pressroom/pressreleases/2015-01-19/richest-1-will-own-more-all-rest-2016
January 19, 2015

Français (PDF - 140Ko.)
http://oxfamilibrary.openrepository.com/oxfam/bitstream/10546/338125/10/ib-wealth-having-all-wanting-more-190115-fr.pdf

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Related links from 2014:

Working for the Few:
Political capture and economic inequality

http://www.oxfam.org/en/research/working-few
January 20, 2014
Almost half of the world’s wealth is now owned by just one percent of the population, and seven out of ten people live in countries where economic inequality has increased in the last 30 years. The World Economic Forum has identified economic inequality as a major risk to human progress, impacting social stability within countries and threatening security on a global scale.
(...)
In this paper, Oxfam shows how extreme inequality is not inevitable, with examples of policies from around the world which have reduced inequality and developed more representative politics, benefiting all, both rich and poor.

Complete report (PDF - 874KB, 32 pages) :
http://www.oxfam.org/sites/www.oxfam.org/files/file_attachments/bp-working-for-few-political-capture-economic-inequality-200114-en_3.pdf
By Ricardo Fuentes-Nieva (Head of Research, Oxfam GB) and Nicholas Galasso (Research and Policy Advisor, Oxfam America)
Post date: 20 January 2014
Almost half of the world’s wealth is now owned by just one percent of the population, and seven out of ten people live in countries where economic inequality has increased in the last 30 years. The World Economic Forum has identified economic inequality as a major risk to human progress, impacting social stability within countries and threatening security on a global scale.
(...)
In this paper, Oxfam shows how extreme inequality is not inevitable, with examples of policies from around the world which have reduced inequality and developed more representative politics, benefiting all, both rich and poor.

Source:
OXFAM International
http://www.oxfam.org/
Oxfam is an international confederation of 17 organizations working together with partners and local communities in more than 90 countries. One person in three in the world lives in poverty. Oxfam is determined to change that world by mobilizing the power of people against poverty.

See also:

OXFAM International's
World Economic Forum 2015 resource:
http://www.oxfam.org/en/campaigns/world-economic-forum-2015

---

World Economic Forum Annual Meeting 2015
http://www.weforum.org/
The World Economic Forum meeting is taking place in Davos-Klosters, Switzerland, from 21 - 24 January 2015. The Forum is an International Institution committed to improving the state of the world through public-private cooperation. It engages political, business, academic and other leaders of society in collaborative efforts to shape global, regional and industry agendas.

---

World Social Forum Tunisia 2015
https://fsm2015.org/en
The 2015 World Social Forum will be held in Tunis (Tunisia), from March 24 to 28, 2015.
The World Social Forum is an open meeting place where social movements, networks, NGOs and other civil society organizations opposed to neo-liberalism and a world dominated by capital or by any form of imperialism come together to pursue their thinking, to debate ideas democratically, for formulate proposals, share their experiences freely and network for effective action

United States

US wealth inequality - top 0.1% worth as much as the bottom 90%
Not since the Great Depression has wealth inequality in the US been so acute, new in-depth study finds

http://www.theguardian.com/business/2014/nov/13/us-wealth-inequality-top-01-worth-as-much-as-the-bottom-90
November 13, 2014
Wealth inequality in the US is at near record levels according to a new study by academics. Over the past three decades, the share of household wealth owned by the top 0.1% has increased from 7% to 22%. For the bottom 90% of families, a combination of rising debt, the collapse of the value of their assets during the financial crisis, and stagnant real wages have led to the erosion of wealth. The share of wealth owned by the top 0.1% is almost the same as the bottom 90%.

Source:
The Guardian (U.K.)
http://www.theguardian.com/

Perspectives on Inequality and Opportunity from the Survey of Consumer Finances:
Speech by Janet Yellen, Chair of US Federal Reserve At the Conference on Economic
Opportunity and Inequality, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, Boston, Massachusetts
HTML version :
http://federalreserve.gov/newsevents/speech/yellen20141017a.htm
PDF version (454K, 33 pages) : http://federalreserve.gov/newsevents/speech/yellen20141017a.pdf

October 17, 2014
The distribution of income and wealth in the United States has been widening more or less steadily for several decades, to a greater extent than in most advanced countries. This trend paused during the Great Recession because of larger wealth losses for those at the top of the distribution and because increased safety-net spending helped offset some income losses for those below the top. But widening inequality resumed in the recovery, as the stock market rebounded, wage growth and the healing of the labor market have been slow, and the increase in home prices has not fully restored the housing wealth lost by the large majority of households for which it is their primary asset.
(...)
In my remarks, I will review trends in income and wealth inequality over the past several decades, then identify and discuss four sources of economic opportunity in America--think of them as "building blocks" for the gains in income and wealth that most Americans hope are within reach of those who strive for them.

Four Building Blocks of Opportunity:
1. Resources available to children in their most formative years;
2. Higher education that students and their families can afford;
3. Ownership of a private business;
4. Inheritances.

RESEARCH TIP:
The transcript of this speech contains 43 endnotes, many of which offer links to more detailed studies.

Source:
U.S. Federal Reserve System

http://federalreserve.gov/

Inequality for All
http://billmoyers.com/episode/full-show-inequality-for-all/
September 20, 2013
Robert Reich tells Bill Moyers about 'Inequality for All,' a documentary about our shrinking middle class and the growing problem of income inequality.
[ Robert Reich was Bill Clinton’s secretary of labor; he is currently a professor at the University of California Berkeley.]

NOTE : This video is almost an hour long, and WELL worth the time to watch!

Source:
BillMoyers.com
[ http://billmoyers.com/ ]

Inequality and the Case for Unions
https://www.commondreams.org/view/2014/06/22-2
By Tim Koechlin
June 22, 2014
Across the country, Republican legislatures – encouraged and financed, as usual, by corporate money and right wing think tanks-- have undertaken a stunning array of initiatives designed to weaken unions and otherwise undermine American workers. (...) Republicans tell a tired, cynical story about all of this, insisting that union busting is, somehow, good for the economy and good for workers. It’s the same old trickle down nonsense. Democrats, on the other hand, have done too little to defend unions and worker rights.
(...)
In 1973, 27% of US workers were unionized. Now, it’s just 13% -- the lowest rate among the world’s rich (“industrialized”) countries. It is no coincidence that the U.S. is, by every reasonable measure, the most unequal of the world’s rich countries.
(...)
Relentlessly, we need to ask our representatives – especially fearful, cautious, and misguided Democrats: Which side are you on?
Unions are good for workers. It’s that simple.

Source:
Common Dreams
https://www.commondreams.org/
Common Dreams is a non-profit independent newscenter created in 1997 as a new media model. By relying on our readers and tens of thousands of small donations to keep us moving forward -- with no advertising, corporate underwriting or government funding -- Common Dreams maintains an editorial independence our readers can count on.

Welcome to the Piketty revolution:
“Capital in the 21st Century” is a game-changer (even if you never read it)
http://goo.gl/bfEMdA
April 27, 2014
Anyone who’s anyone (and many more who aren’t) has written something this week about “Capital in the 21st Century,” the new treatise on income inequality by French economist Thomas Piketty.

The book was actually published early last month by Harvard University Press, but arrived to fanfare only within the insular, if august, community of economic policy researchers. So, on arrival, it might have seemed like the 700-page tome, with its academic tone and laboriously documented historical analyses, was destined to a life of obscurity. But then something strange happened. People — regular people — started to buy it in droves. By the time “Capital” surged to the top of the charts this week — so many physical copies of the book were sold that Amazon actually ran out of inventory — Thomas Piketty had become the most famous economist this side of Paul Krugman, celebrated on the left and reviled on the right.

At this point, a review or discussion of “Capital” is almost a rite of passage for an aspiring wonk.
--- You can read this writer’s here : [ http://goo.gl/GMV4qa ]

But the one question that hangs over Piketty’s meteoric rise is, in a way, the most obvious one: What does any of this actually mean?

Source:
Salon.com
http://www.salon.com/

---

Read the Intro to the book:
http://www.hup.harvard.edu/features/capital-in-the-twenty-first-century-introduction.html

---

Buy the book:

Capital in the Twenty-First Century
http://goo.gl/w7fKBM

---

Commentary:

Thomas Piketty’s got conservatives running scared
New York Times columnist Paul Krugman argues the right has no idea how to offer a legitimate policy response to inequality

http://www.salon.com/2014/04/25/paul_krugman_thomas_pikettys_got_conservatives_running_scared/
April 25, 2014

Also by Paul Krugman:

The Piketty Panic
http://www.nytimes.com/2014/04/25/opinion/krugman-the-piketty-panic.html
“Capital in the Twenty-First Century,” the new book by the French economist Thomas Piketty, is a bona fide phenomenon. Other books on economics have been best sellers, but Mr. Piketty’s contribution is serious, discourse-changing scholarship in a way most best sellers aren’t. And conservatives are terrified. Thus James Pethokoukis of the American Enterprise Institute warns in National Reviewthat Mr. Piketty’s work must be refuted, because otherwise it “will spread among the clerisy and reshape the political economic landscape on which all future policy battles will be waged.” Well, good luck with that.

---

Related link:

What The 1% Don’t Want You To Know (video, duration 24:30)
http://www.upworthy.com/what-the-1-dont-want-you-to-know
Vimeo version:
http://vimeo.com/92308666
By Brandon Weber
Undated (but recent because it focuses on the Piketty book that was just released )
I know it's a lot to ask for 24 minutes of your time, but this one is very much worth it. Paul Krugman and Bill Moyers talk about a new book that is hot, hot, hot: "Capital in the Twenty-First Century" by economist Thomas Piketty.

Source:
Upworthy
http://www.upworthy.com/

The American Middle Class Is No Longer the World’s Richest
http://www.nytimes.com/2014/04/23/upshot/the-american-middle-class-is-no-longer-the-worlds-richest.html
By David Leonhardt and Kevin Quealy
April 22, 2014(...)
While the wealthiest Americans are outpacing many of their global peers, a New York Times analysis shows that across the lower- and middle-income tiers, citizens of other advanced countries have received considerably larger raises over the last three decades. After-tax middle-class incomes in Canada — substantially behind in 2000 — now appear to be higher than in the United States. The poor in much of Europe earn more than poor Americans. The numbers, based on surveys conducted over the past 35 years, offer some of the most detailed publicly available comparisons for different income groups in different countries over time. They suggest that most American families are paying a steep price for high and rising income inequality.

About the Data
http://www.nytimes.com/2014/04/23/upshot/about-the-data.html
The data in the above article comes from LIS, a group that maintains the Luxembourg Income Study Database.

Related link:

Luxembourg Income Study Database
LIS Cross-National Data Center in Luxembourg
http://www.lisdatacenter.org/
LIS is a cross-national data center which serves a global community of researchers, educators, and policy makers. LIS acquires datasets with income, wealth, employment, and demographic data from a large number of countries, harmonises them to enable cross-national comparisons, and makes them available for public use by providing registered users with remote access.

---

From the CBC:

Canada vs. U.S. middle class: What the New York Times missed:
'It's just one data set,' an economist says
http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/canada-vs-u-s-middle-class-what-the-new-york-times-missed-1.2621147
By Mark Gollom
April 25, 2014
A New York Times report based on income data compiled for the Luxembourg Income Study Database found that median per capita income for the U.S. in 2010 was $18,700 US. In Canada, the median per capita income was the same.

An analysis piece in the venerable New York Times declaring that Canada's middle class is now better off than the middle class in the U.S. has certainly generated headlines across this country. But not all analysts are convinced the report tells the whole story.

---

Why the rich get richer and the poor get poorer
Policy experts say middle-class squeezed as most of the gains go to the 1%
(video debate, duration 8:11)
http://www.cbc.ca/news/business/why-the-rich-get-richer-and-the-poor-get-poorer-1.2580263

Source:
CBC News

http://www.cbc.ca/news/

United States

From Dissent Magazine:

Our Inequality
http://www.dissentmagazine.org/tag/our-inequality
[Click the link above to access the articles below.]
* Who Pays? Taxes and American Inequality - April 10, 2014
* A Tattered Safety Net: Social Policy and American Inequality - April 3, 2014
* The Perils of Private Welfare: Job-Based Benefits and American Inequality - March 27, 2014
* The Bare Minimum: Labor Standards and American Inequality - March 20, 2014
* The Union Difference: Labor and American Inequality - March 13, 2014
* Our Inequality: An Introduction - March 6, 2014
This series is adapted from Growing Apart: A Political History of American Inequality:
[ http://scalar.usc.edu/works/growing-apart-a-political-history-of-american-inequality/index ]
... which is a resource developed for the Project on Inequality and the Common Good at the Institute for Policy Studies and inequality.org.
[ http://inequality.org/ ]

Source:
Dissent Magazine:
http://www.dissentmagazine.org/

According to the New York Times, Dissent Magazine is a “ pillar of leftist intellectual provocation”.
Dissent is a quarterly magazine of politics and ideas which established itself as one of America’s leading intellectual journals in 1954.

We Can’t Grow the Gap Away
http://www.nytimes.com/2014/03/15/opinion/blow-we-cant-grow-the-gap-away.html?emc=edit_th_20140315&nl=todaysheadlines&nlid=58981665
By Charles M. Blow
March 14, 2014
The shocking level of income inequality in this country has set off alarms that grow louder by the day, but little seems to be underway to reverse the trend. As a January International Monetary Fund paper * that was officially released on Thursday points out:“In the United States, the share of market income captured by the richest 10 percent surged from around 30 percent in 1980 to 48 percent by 2012, while the share of the richest 1 percent increased from 8 percent to 19 percent. Even more striking is the fourfold increase in the income share of the richest 0.1 percent, from 2.6 percent to 10.4 percent.

* The International Monetary Fund paper:

Fiscal Policy and Income Inequality:
IMF Policy Paper
(PDF - 968K, 68 pages):
http://www.imf.org/external/np/pp/eng/2014/012314.pdf
January 23, 2004
--- Fiscal policy is the primary tool for governments to affect income distribution.
--- Both tax and expenditure policies need to be carefully designed to balance distributional and efficiency objectives, including during fiscal consolidation.

Source:
International Monetary Fund

http://www.imf.org/

Economic inequality by the numbers
http://www.pressprogress.ca/en/post/economic-inequality-numbers
February 25, 2014
The Survey of Financial Security [ http://goo.gl/tf1RPQ ] , released Tuesday by Statistics Canada, paints a picture of persistent economic inequality and rising debt. Canadians' net worth climbed 44.5% since 2005 to $243,800, mostly due to increases in housing prices. But debt levels also went up by 41.6% (totaling $1.3 trillion, mostly in mortgage debt). All figures are adjusted for inflation. And if you dig deeper, there are other numbers that aren't so pretty. Overall, the distribution was slightly better in 2012 than in 2005, but remains very unequal...

Source:
PressProgress
http://www.pressprogress.ca/
Advancing progressive solutions for Canada with hard-hitting news and analysis, PressProgress cuts through the day's political spin with facts and an informed point of view. We are a project of The Broadbent Institute [ http://www.broadbentinstitute.ca/ ].

---

From
The Broadbent Blog:

[ http://www.broadbentinstitute.ca/en/blog ]

New StatsCan wealth data points to persistent economic inequality
http://www.broadbentinstitute.ca/en/blog/new-statscan-wealth-data-points-persistent-income-inequality
February 25, 2014


20 Things the Rich Do Every Day

http://www.daveramsey.com/blog/20-things-the-rich-do-every-day
1. 70% of wealthy eat less than 300 junk food calories per day. 97% of poor people eat more than 300 junk food calories per day. 23% of wealthy gamble. 52% of poor people gamble.
2. 80% of wealthy are focused on accomplishing some single goal. Only 12% of the poor do this.
3. 76% of wealthy exercise aerobically four days a week. 23% of poor do this.
4. 63% of wealthy listen to audio books during commute to work vs. 5% of poor people.
5. 81% of wealthy maintain a to-do list vs. 19% of poor.
6. 63% of wealthy parents make their children read two or more non-fiction books a month vs. 3% of poor.
7. 70% of wealthy parents make their children volunteer 10 hours or more a month vs. 3% of poor.
8. 80% of wealthy make Happy Birthday calls vs. 11% of poor.
9. 67% of wealthy write down their goals vs. 17% of poor.
10. 88% of wealthy read 30 minutes or more each day for education or career reasons vs. 2% of poor.
11. 6% of wealthy say what’s on their mind vs. 69% of poor.
12. 79% of wealthy network five hours or more each month vs. 16% of poor.
13. 67% of wealthy watch one hour or less of TV every day vs. 23% of poor.
14. 6% of wealthy watch reality TV vs. 78% of poor.
15. 44% of wealthy wake up three hours before work starts vs. 3% of poor.
16. 74% of wealthy teach good daily success habits to their children vs. 1% of poor.
17. 84% of wealthy believe good habits create opportunity luck vs. 4% of poor.
18. 76% of wealthy believe bad habits create detrimental luck vs. 9% of poor.
19. 86% of wealthy believe in lifelong educational self-improvement vs. 5% of poor.
20. 86% of wealthy love to read vs. 26% of poor.


20 things the poor really do every day

http://benirwin.wordpress.com/2013/12/03/20-things-the-poor-do-every-day/

1. Search for affordable housing.
2. Try to make $133 worth of food last a whole month.
3. Subsist on poor quality food.
4. Skip a meal.
5. Work longer and harder than most of us.
6. Go to bed 3 hours before their first job starts.
7. Try to avoid getting beat up by someone they love.
8. Put themselves in harm’s way, only to be kicked to the streets afterward.
9. Pay more than their fair share of taxes.
10. Fall further behind.
11. Raise kids who will be poor.
12. Vote less.
13. When they do vote… vote pretty much the same as the rest of us.
14. Live with chronic pain.
15. Live shorter lives.
16. Use drugs and alcohol pretty much the same as (or less than) everyone else.
17. Receive less in subsidized benefits than corporations.
18. Get themselves off welfare as soon as possible.
19. Have about the same number of children as everyone else.
20. Accomplish one single goal: stay alive.


Oxfam: Combined wealth of the 85 richest people is equal to that of poorest 3.5 billion
http://goo.gl/AsFJxn
January 20, 2014
Global inequality has increased to the extent that the £1 trillion combined wealth of the 85 richest people is equal to that of the poorest 3.5 billion - half of the world's population - according to a new report from development charity Oxfam. And the report, entitled Working For The Few, claims that growing inequality has been driven by a "power grab" by wealthy elites, who have co-opted the political process to rig the rules of the economic system in their favour.

Oxfam called on attendees at this week's World Economic Forum (see below), which brings together politicians and business leaders in the Swiss ski resort of Davos, to take a personal pledge to tackle the problem by refraining from dodging taxes or using their wealth to seek political favours.

Oxfam chief executive Winnie Byanyima said: "We cannot hope to win the fight against poverty without tackling inequality. Widening inequality is creating a vicious circle where wealth and power are increasingly concentrated in the hands of a few, leaving the rest of us to fight over crumbs from the top table."

Source:
Belfast Telegraph

http://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/

Read/Download
Working for the Few : Political capture and economic inequality

Magazine format (read online):
http://issuu.com/0xfam/docs/oxfam-bp-working-for-few-political-/7?e=1574349/6403563

PDF format (876K, 32 pages):
http://www.oxfam.org/sites/www.oxfam.org/files/bp-working-for-few-political-capture-economic-inequality-200114-en.pdf

Version française du rapport (PDF, 739K, 34 pages):
http://www.oxfam.org/sites/www.oxfam.org/files/bp-working-for-few-political-capture-economic-inequality-200114-fr.pdf

Summary (296K, 6 pages):
http://www.oxfam.org/sites/www.oxfam.org/files/bp-working-for-few-political-capture-economic-inequality-200114-summ-en.pdf

Source:
OXFAM

http://www.oxfam.org/


20 Things the Rich Do Every Day

http://www.daveramsey.com/blog/20-things-the-rich-do-every-day
1. 70% of wealthy eat less than 300 junk food calories per day. 97% of poor people eat more than 300 junk food calories per day. 23% of wealthy gamble. 52% of poor people gamble.
2. 80% of wealthy are focused on accomplishing some single goal. Only 12% of the poor do this.
3. 76% of wealthy exercise aerobically four days a week. 23% of poor do this.
4. 63% of wealthy listen to audio books during commute to work vs. 5% of poor people.
5. 81% of wealthy maintain a to-do list vs. 19% of poor.
6. 63% of wealthy parents make their children read two or more non-fiction books a month vs. 3% of poor.
7. 70% of wealthy parents make their children volunteer 10 hours or more a month vs. 3% of poor.
8. 80% of wealthy make Happy Birthday calls vs. 11% of poor.
9. 67% of wealthy write down their goals vs. 17% of poor.
10. 88% of wealthy read 30 minutes or more each day for education or career reasons vs. 2% of poor.
11. 6% of wealthy say what’s on their mind vs. 69% of poor.
12. 79% of wealthy network five hours or more each month vs. 16% of poor.
13. 67% of wealthy watch one hour or less of TV every day vs. 23% of poor.
14. 6% of wealthy watch reality TV vs. 78% of poor.
15. 44% of wealthy wake up three hours before work starts vs. 3% of poor.
16. 74% of wealthy teach good daily success habits to their children vs. 1% of poor.
17. 84% of wealthy believe good habits create opportunity luck vs. 4% of poor.
18. 76% of wealthy believe bad habits create detrimental luck vs. 9% of poor.
19. 86% of wealthy believe in lifelong educational self-improvement vs. 5% of poor.
20. 86% of wealthy love to read vs. 26% of poor.


20 things the poor really do every day

http://benirwin.wordpress.com/2013/12/03/20-things-the-poor-do-every-day/

1. Search for affordable housing.
2. Try to make $133 worth of food last a whole month.
3. Subsist on poor quality food.
4. Skip a meal.
5. Work longer and harder than most of us.
6. Go to bed 3 hours before their first job starts.
7. Try to avoid getting beat up by someone they love.
8. Put themselves in harm’s way, only to be kicked to the streets afterward.
9. Pay more than their fair share of taxes.
10. Fall further behind.
11. Raise kids who will be poor.
12. Vote less.
13. When they do vote… vote pretty much the same as the rest of us.
14. Live with chronic pain.
15. Live shorter lives.
16. Use drugs and alcohol pretty much the same as (or less than) everyone else.
17. Receive less in subsidized benefits than corporations.
18. Get themselves off welfare as soon as possible.
19. Have about the same number of children as everyone else.
20. Accomplish one single goal: stay alive.

Inequality for Dummies
http://www.nytimes.com/2013/12/23/opinion/inequality-for-dummies.html
By Bill Keller
December 22, 2013
(...) economic inequality is manifestly real, growing and dangerous. The gulf between the penthouse and the projects is obscenely wide. Obama cited some of the startling numbers: The top 10 percent of Americans used to take in a third of the national income. Now they gobble up half. The typical corporate C.E.O. used to make 30 times as much as the average worker. Now the boss makes 270 times as much as the minion.
(...)
The alarming thing is not inequality per se, but immobility. It’s not just that we have too many poor people, but that they are stranded in poverty with long odds against getting out. The rich (and their children) stay rich, the poor (and their children) stay poor. (...) A stratified society in which the bottom and top are mostly locked in place is not just morally offensive; it is unstable. Recessions are more frequent in such countries.

Source:
New York Times
http://www.nytimes.com/


Wealth Inequality in America
(video, duration 6:23)
http://youtu.be/QPKKQnijnsM
November 20, 2012
Infographics on the distribution of wealth in America, highlighting both the inequality and the difference between our perception of inequality and the actual numbers. The reality is often not what we think it is.

Click the screen on the left or the video link above to watch this informative series of infographics.

References:
* http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2011/02/income-inequality-in-america-chart-graph
* http://danariely.com/2010/09/30/wealth-inequality/
* http://thinkprogress.org/economy/2011/10/03/334156/top-five-wealthiest-one-percent/
* http://money.cnn.com/2012/04/19/news/economy/ceo-pay/index.htm

 


From
Spotlight on Poverty and Opportunity:

[ http://www.spotlightonpoverty.org/ ]

Report Explores Trends in Inequality Over Time
June 26, 2013
The Institute for Policy Studies Program on Inequality and the Common Good [ http://www.ips-dc.org/inequality ] released an interactive report that explores the political and economic factors that have contributed to the rise in inequality among Americans in the aftermath of World War II to present day. Growing Apart: A Political History of American Inequality attributes growing inequality in the 1970s and 1980s to the decline in collective bargaining (especially for men) and the declining value of the minimum wage (especially for women). In more recent years, the report finds that diminishing caseloads and benefits of social programs (most pronounced after welfare reform in 1996), and the decline in job-based benefits helped widen the already growing gap.

The complete report:

Growing Apart: A Political History of American Inequality
http://scalar.usc.edu/works/growing-apart-a-political-history-of-american-inequality/table-of-contents
- Table of contents with links to individual sections
Excerpts (Intro, p. 5):
The policies that ensured shared prosperity in the past may be inefficient or insufficient to our current and future challenges—which are not only economic, but political and social and environmental as well. And it would be folly to engage in the imagination or pursuit of a “New New Deal” without rethinking its administrative, economic, and redistributive premises.

Key Elements and Strategies:
--- Real and Sustainable Economic Growth
--- A New Commitment to Strong Labor Standards
--- Backfilling Social Insurance
--- Restraining, and Tapping into, the One Percent

Source:
Institute for Policy Studies
Program on Inequality and the Common Good
http://www.ips-dc.org/inequality

From
Inequality.org:

U.S. Inequality Now Literally Off the Chart
http://inequality.org/ilo-report-inequality-literally-chart/
Among the world’s major nations, documents the UN agency dedicated to labor matters, only one currently has a level of inequality both high and rising.
June 6, 2013
By Salvatore Babones
It is well known that the level of income inequality stretches much higher in the United States than in the other developed countries of Europe and North America. Now a report from the International Labour Organization (see the ILO link below) shows that U.S. inequality has literally gone off the chart. Income inequality in the United States is soaring so high, in fact, that the authors of the ILO’s new 2013 World of Work report couldn’t even place the United States on the same graph with the other 25 developed countries their new study examines.

Source:
Inequality.org

http://inequality.org/

---

The complete
International Labour Organization report:

World of Work Report 2013:
Repairing the economic and social fabric
(PDF - 4.9MB, 133 pages)
http://www.ilo.org/wcmsp5/groups/public/---dgreports/---dcomm/documents/publication/wcms_214476.pdf
The study analyses the global employment situation five years after the start of the global financial crisis. It looks at labour market performance and projections both at the global and regional levels

Source:
International Institute for Labour Studies
http://www.ilo.org/inst/lang--en/index.htm
The International Institute for Labour Studies (IILS) was established in 1960 as an autonomous facility of the International Labour Organization (ILO) to further policy research, public debate and the sharing of knowledge on emerging labour and social issues of concern to the ILO and its constituents – labour, business and government.
International Labour Organization (ILO)

http://www.ilo.org/
The main aims of the ILO are to promote rights at work, encourage decent employment opportunities, enhance social protection and strengthen dialogue on work-related issues.

The Wealthy Kids Are All Right:
In a tough economy with dwindling social supports, children of privilege have a bigger head start than ever.

http://prospect.org/article/wealthy-kids-are-all-right
By Chuck Collins
May 28, 2013
Two 21-year-old college students sit down in a coffee shop to study for an upcoming test. Behind the counter, a barista whips up their double-shot lattes. In the back kitchen, another young adult washes the dishes and empties the trash. These four young adults have a lot in common. They are the same age and race, each has two parents, and all grew up in the same metropolitan area. They were all strong students in their respective high schools. But as they enter their third decade, their work futures and life trajectories are radically different—and largely determined at this point.

Source:
American Prospect
http://prospect.org/
The Prospect is a bimonthly print and online political magazine based in Washington, D.C.
The people at Prospect are liberal, progressive and lefty.


The Rules

http://www.therules.org/
The richest 300 people on earth have as much wealth as the poorest 3 billion.
This is no accident; those in power write the rules.
Together, we have the power to change those rules.
The Rules is a global movement to bring power back to the people and change the policies, practices and beliefs that create inequality and poverty around the world.

Issues
http://www.therules.org/en/the-issues
* Taxes

Multinational corporations and the super-rich create and exploit tax loopholes to grow immense wealth tax-free.
* Climate
Many of the richest countries and corporations are allowing themselves to damage our environment in their quest for short-term advantage, growth and profit.
* Land
The right to live and work safely is under constant threat for those of us with no secure rights to the land we are on.
* Health
The lives of those of us already impoverished are treated as less important than the lives of rich people.
* Food
The short-term advantage, growth and profit of corporations are treated as more important than the health and sustainability of people and the planet.
* Women and Girls
Cultural norms and other prejudices often prevent us from having control over our own lives, in the way that men do.
* Trade [blank section]

Source:
The Rules

http://www.therules.org/

 

Global Wealth Inequality : What you never knew you never knew (video, duration 3:50)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uWSxzjyMNpU

Reference material used to produce the above video:
(The source for the following six links is the "Show more" section in the YouTube video description just below the video window)

* Global Wealth 2012: The Year in Review
[ http://goo.gl/XBKhf ]
- from Crédit suisse:
[ https://www.credit-suisse.com/ ]

* Human Development Report 1999
[ http://hdr.undp.org/en/reports/global/hdr1999/ ]
- from the United Nations Development Programme:
[ http://www.undp.org/ ]

* OECD Aid Statistics : Detailed final 2011 aid figures released
http://www.oecd.org/dac/stats/final2011oda.htm
- from the The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD):
[ http://www.oecd.org/ ]

* Illicit Financial Flows from Developing Countries: 2001-2010
http://iff.gfintegrity.org/iff2012/2012report.html
- from
Global Financial Integrity (GFI):
[ http://iff.gfintegrity.org/ ]

GFI is part of the Center for International Policy:
[ http://www.ciponline.org/ ]

* International Debt Statistics
http://data.worldbank.org/data-catalog/international-debt-statistics
- from The World Bank
:
[ http://www.worldbank.org/ ]

* The World’s 200 Richest People
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-11-01/the-world-s-200-richest-people.html
- from Bloomberg:
[ http://www.bloomberg.com/ ]

Singapore’s Lessons for an Unequal America
http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/03/18/singapores-lessons-for-an-unequal-america/
By Joseph Stiglitz
March 18, 2013
Inequality has been rising in most countries around the world, but it has played out in different ways across countries and regions. The United States, it is increasingly recognized, has the sad distinction of being the most unequal advanced country, though the income gap has also widened to a lesser extent, in Britain, Japan, Canada and Germany.
(...)
Singapore has had the distinction of having prioritized social and economic equity while achieving very high rates of growth over the past 30 years — an example par excellence that inequality is not just a matter of social justice but of economic performance. Societies with fewer economic disparities perform better — not just for those at the bottom or the middle, but over all.

234 Comments about this article:
http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/03/18/singapores-lessons-for-an-unequal-america/#postComment

[ Author Joseph E. Stiglitz, a Nobel laureate in economics and University Professor at Columbia University, was Chairman of President Bill Clinton’s Council of Economic Advisers and served as Senior Vice President and Chief Economist of the World Bank. ]

Source:
New York Times

http://www.nytimes.com/

Equal Opportunity, Our National Myth
http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/02/16/equal-opportunity-our-national-myth/
February 16, 2013
By Joseph Stiglitz
President Obama’s second Inaugural Address used soaring language to reaffirm America’s commitment to the dream of equality of opportunity.
(...)
Today, the United States has less equality of opportunity than almost any other advanced industrial country. Study after study has exposed the myth that America is a land of opportunity. This is especially tragic: While Americans may differ on the desirability of equality of outcomes, there is near-universal consensus that inequality of opportunity is indefensible. The Pew Research Center has found [ http://www.people-press.org/files/legacy-pdf/517.pdf ] that some 90 percent of Americans believe that the government should do everything it can to ensure equality of opportunity.

Source:
The Great Divide : a series about inequality

http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/category/the-great-divide/
The Great Divide is a series on inequality — the haves, the have-nots and everyone in between — in the United States and around the world, and its implications for economics, politics, society and culture. The series moderator is Joseph E. Stiglitz, a Nobel laureate in economics, a Columbia professor and a former chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers and chief economist for the World Bank.

Also in the Great Divide series:

* February 9, 2013 : In China, a Vast Chasm Between the Rich and the Rest
* February 2, 2013 : The Boys at the Back
* January 26, 2013 : The Rise of the Permanent Temp Economy
* January 19, 2013 : Inequality Is Holding Back the Recovery
[Click the link above to access any of these articles.]

Incomes Flat in Recovery, but Not for the 1%
http://www.nytimes.com/2013/02/16/business/economy/income-gains-after-recession-went-mostly-to-top-1.html
By Annie Lowrey
February 15, 2013
WASHINGTON — Incomes rose more than 11 percent for the top 1 percent of earners during the economic recovery, but not at all for everybody else, according to new data.

Source:
New York Times

http://www.nytimes.com/

The new data:

Striking it Richer:
The Evolution of Top Incomes in the United States
(PDF - 292K, 10 pages)
http://elsa.berkeley.edu/~saez/saez-UStopincomes-2011.pdf
(Updated with 2011 estimates)
By Emmanuel Saez
January 23, 2013
The labor market has been creating much more inequality over the last thirty years, with the very top earners capturing a large fraction of macroeconomic productivity gains. A number of factors may help explain this increase in inequality, not only underlying technological changes but also the retreat of institutions developed during the New Deal and World War II - such as progressive tax policies, powerful unions, corporate provision of health and retirement benefits, and changing social norms regarding pay inequality. We need to decide as a society whether this increase in income inequality is efficient and acceptable and, if not, what mix of institutional and tax reforms should be developed to counter it.

Source:
Berkeley University of California
http://berkeley.edu/

Two NY Times op-eds on fair taxation
and reduction of inequality:

The Twinkie Manifesto
By Paul Krugman
November 18, 2012
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/11/19/opinion/krugman-the-twinkie-manifesto.html
(...)
Consider the question of tax rates on the wealthy. The modern American right, and much of the alleged center, is obsessed with the notion that low tax rates at the top are essential to growth. (...) Yet in the 1950s — the Twinkie Era — incomes in the top bracket faced a marginal tax rate of 91, that’s right, 91 percent, while taxes on corporate profits were twice as large, relative to national income, as in recent years. The best estimates suggest that circa 1960 the top 0.01 percent of Americans paid an effective federal tax rate of more than 70 percent, twice what they pay today.
(...)
There are, let’s face it, some people in our political life who pine for the days when minorities and women knew their place, gays stayed firmly in the closet and congressmen asked, “Are you now or have you ever been?” The rest of us, however, are very glad those days are gone. We are, morally, a much better nation than we were. Oh, and the food has improved a lot, too.

Along the way, however, we’ve forgotten something important — namely, that economic justice and economic growth aren’t incompatible. America in the 1950s made the rich pay their fair share; it gave workers the power to bargain for decent wages and benefits; yet contrary to right-wing propaganda then and now, it prospered. And we can do that again.

---

To Reduce Inequality, Tax Wealth, Not Income
By Daniel Altman
November 18, 2012
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/11/19/opinion/to-reduce-inequality-tax-wealth-not-income.html
WHETHER you’re in the 99 percent, the 47 percent or the 1 percent, inequality in America may threaten your future. Often decried for moral or social reasons, inequality imperils the economy, too; the International Monetary Fund recently warned that high income inequality could damage a country’s long-term growth. But the real menace for our long-term prosperity is not income inequality — it’s wealth inequality, which distorts access to economic opportunities.
(...)
Trends in the distribution of wealth can look very different from trends in incomes, because wealth is a measure of accumulated assets, not a flow over time. High earners add much more to their wealth every year than low earners. Over time, wealth inequality rises even as income inequality stays the same, and wealth inequality eventually becomes much more severe.

[Daniel Altman is an adjunct associate professor of economics at the New York University Stern School of Business and a former member of the New York Times editorial board.]

Source:
New York Times
http://www.nytimes.com/

Income Inequality - Special collection of links to HUNDREDS of NY Times articles about income inequality)
http://topics.nytimes.com/top/reference/timestopics/subjects/i/income/income_inequality/index.html

Poverty gives way to inequality and the Great Frustration
http://www.theglobeandmail.com/commentary/poverty-gives-way-to-inequality-and-the-great-frustration/article4625291/
By Doug Saunders
October 20, 2012
(...) Around the world, politicians are (discovering that their) constituents, who were satisfied simply not to be poor a generation ago, have now entered an era that might be called the Great Frustration. Those people on the lowest edge of the middle class – in both poor and rich countries – have discovered they have little chance of advancing further. In countries such as Canada, they may be starting to slip back.
That’s why inequality has replaced poverty as the great political theme of the moment. Once upon a time, we might have believed the two were related – but it turns out, as leaders from Beijing to Berlin to Bogota are discovering, they’re very different problems.
(...)
In poor countries, the emerging almost middle classes are stuck. In countries such as Canada, the middle classes have seen their incomes and purchasing power stagnate, even slip back somewhat. Inequality has increased – and when that happens, economists have shown that there’s a corresponding collapse of social mobility, the ability to escape your income group for a higher one.

301 comments about this article
http://www.theglobeandmail.com/commentary/poverty-gives-way-to-inequality-and-the-great-frustration/article4625291/comments/

Source:
Globe and Mail
http://www.theglobeandmail.com/

For richer, for poorer
http://goo.gl/l79JM
Growing inequality is one of the biggest social, economic and political challenges of our time.
But it is not inevitable.

By Zanny Minton Beddoes
October 13, 2012
(...)
Although inequality has been on the rise for three decades, its political prominence is newer. During the go-go years before the financial crisis, growing disparities were hardly at the top of politicians’ to-do list. One reason was that asset bubbles and cheap credit eased life for everyone. Financiers were growing fabulously wealthy in the early 2000s, but others could also borrow ever more against the value of their home.
That changed after the crash. The bank rescues shone a spotlight on the unfairness of a system in which affluent bankers were bailed out whereas ordinary folk lost their houses and jobs. And in today’s sluggish economies, more inequality often means that people at the bottom and even in the middle of the income distribution are falling behind not just in relative but also in absolute terms.

This article is part of the Special Report on the World Economy:
http://www.economist.com/printedition/specialreports?year[value][year]=2012&category=76985

Source:
The Economist

http://www.economist.com/

From the
New York Times:

Income Inequality (Special collection of 788 NYTimes articles about income inequality)
http://topics.nytimes.com/top/reference/timestopics/subjects/i/income/income_inequality/index.html
Updated October 16, 2012

Income inequality has soared to the highest levels since the Great Depression [ http://goo.gl/9Bczh ] and the recession has done little to reverse the trend, with the top 1 percent of earners taking 93 percent of the income gains in the first full year of the recovery. The yawning gap between the haves and the have-nots — and the political questions that gap has raised about the plight of the middle class — has given rise to anti-Wall Street sentiment and animated the presidential campaign. Now, a growing body of economic research suggests that it might mean lower levels of economic growth and slower job creation in the years ahead, as well.

A September 2012 study [ http://stateofworkingamerica.org/subjects/wealth/?reader ] by the left-of-center Economic Policy Institute [ http://www.epi.org/ ], a research group in Washington, has found that the top 1 percent of households now hold a larger share of overall wealth than the bottom 90 percent does.

Source:
New York Times
http://www.nytimes.com/

From the
Economic Policy Institute
:

From the
Economic Policy Institute
:

The State of Working America , 12th Edition
http://stateofworkingamerica.org/
September 2012
The State of Working America... has been the Economic Policy Institute’s flagship publication since 1988. For the first time, the entire book, including the full text and all of the charts, is available online and fully downloadable, along with summary fact sheets that include the book’s key findings. Additionally, the “Open Data” feature enables academics, policymakers, journalists, and the public to download additional data on selected income, jobs, and wages charts.

The State of Working America includes a wide variety of data on family incomes, wages, jobs, unemployment, wealth, and poverty that allow for a clear, unbiased understanding of the economy’s effect on the living standards of working Americans.

Complete report:

The State of Working America, 12th Edition
http://stateofworkingamerica.org/subjects/overview/?reader
September 2012
By Lawrence Mishel et al.
Like its predecessors, this edition of The State of Working America digs deeply into a broad range of data to answer a basic question that headline numbers on gross
domestic product, inflation, stock indices, productivity, and other metrics can’t wholly answer: “How well has the American economy worked to provide acceptable growth in living standards for most households?”

According to the data, the short answer is, “not well at all.” The past 10 years have been a “lost decade” of wage and income growth for most American families.

Source:
Economic Policy Institute
http://www.epi.org/
The Economic Policy Institute, a nonpartisan, nonprofit Washington, D.C. think tank, was created in 1986 to broaden the discussion about economic policy to include the interests of low- and middle-income workers.

United States

Inequality and Its Perils:
Emerging research suggests that the growing gap between rich and poor
harms the U.S. economy by creating instability and suppressing growth.
http://goo.gl/X07Io
By Jonathan Rauch
September 28, 2012
(...)
According to a recent Congressional Budget Office report, those in the top 1 percent of households doubled their share of pretax income from 1979 to 2007; the bottom 80 percent saw their share fall. Worse, while the average income for the top 1 percent more than tripled (after inflation), the bottom 80 percent saw only feeble income growth, on the order of just 20 percent over nearly 30 years. The rising tide was raising a few boats hugely and most other boats not very much.
(...)
The era when Washington economists and politicians could dismiss inequality as a second- or third-tier issue may be ending. And progressives, potentially, have a case against inequality that might put accusations of “class warfare” and “politics of envy” behind them.

Source:
National Journal

http://www.nationaljournal.com/
Regarded as the most credible, objective, and authoritative voice in the Beltway, National Journal has been Washington’s premier source of nonpartisan insight on politics and policy for more than four decades.
[ About : http://www.nationaljournal.com/about-us ]

65 Years of Tax Cuts for the Wealthy Created Record 'Inequality' Not 'Prosperity,' says Report
http://www.commondreams.org/headline/2012/09/17-4
September 17, 2012
A new study by the non-partisan (govt.) Congressional Research Service [http://www.loc.gov/crsinfo/ ] , which reviewed nearly 65 years of US tax policy and its impact on the overall economy, has found that though cutting the effective tax rate for the nation's wealthiest is a great way to increase undesireable economic inequality, it does not—as Republican rhetoric so frequently claims—do anything to boost employment or fuel economic growth.
The report, Taxes and the Economy: An Economic Analysis of the Top Tax Rates Since 1945, found that "the reduction in the top tax rates have had little association with saving, investment, or productivity growth. However, the top tax rate reductions appear to be associated with the increasing concentration of income at the top of the income distribution."
Source of the above article:
Common Dreams
http://www.commondreams.org/
We share our readers’ progressive values of social justice, human rights, equality and peace. Common Dreams is committed to not only being your trusted news source, but to encouraging critical thinking and civic action on a diverse range of social, economic, and civil rights issues affecting individuals and their communities.

---

The complete report:

Taxes and the Economy: An Economic Analysis
of the Top Tax Rates Since 1945
(PDF - 356K, 23 pages)
http://graphics8.nytimes.com/news/business/0915taxesandeconomy.pdf
September 14, 2012
By Thomas L. Hungerford
Source:
Congressional Research Service

http://www.loc.gov/crsinfo/
[ The Congressional Research Service is part of the
Library of Congress
- http://www.loc.gov/ ]

Income inequality
http://www.conferenceboard.ca/hcp/Details/society/income-inequality.aspx

Table of contents:
* Putting income inequality in context
* What does the Gini coefficient mean?
* How does Canada compare to its peers?
* Has Canada’s relative grade improved?
* Is there other evidence for growing income inequality in Canada?
* Why is income inequality increasing in Canada and peer countries?
* What’s the relationship between income inequality and economic growth?
* How do Canadians feel about income inequality?

Source:
How Canada Performs 2011 : A Report Card on Canada

http://www.conferenceboard.ca/hcp/default.aspx
Conference Board of Canada

http://www.conferenceboard.ca/
The Conference Board builds leadership capacity for a better Canada by creating and sharing insights on economic trends, public policy and organizational performance.

Joseph Stiglitz: From voice in the wilderness to people’s prophet
http://www.thestar.com/opinion/editorialopinion/article/1240639
August 12, 2012
By Carol Goar
Nobel laureate Joseph Stiglitz has written six books in the last 10 years warning of the dangers of extreme income polarization. The American economist’s latest wake-up call is his most urgent.
The Price of Inequality: How Today’s Divided Society Endangers Our Future [ http://goo.gl/LA30s ] , is clear (it is written for non-economists), compelling (his evidence is irrefutable) and comprehensive (he covers everything from the rise of social unrest to the despoiling of the ecosystem). People are finally paying attention. The 450-page book has been on the bestseller list for almost a month.
The media are listening.
(...)
But political leaders, bankers and business magnates are resolutely shutting their ears.
(...)
An economist less resilient than Stiglitz — who was fired by the World Bank for refusing to toe the line; ridiculed for 40 years by the ascendant proponents of free markets, small government, deregulation and privatization; and treated by most of his peers as a dissident — would be in despair by now. But the 69-year-old native of Gary, Ind., is sanguine. He is convinced people will respond if he makes the case clearly enough with enough examples that reflect what’s happening in their lives.
(...)
Looking ahead, the economist sees two possible scenarios.
One is that the mega-rich 1 per cent of the population will realize it is in their own interest to reverse today’s extreme polarization of income. No one benefits from a less productive, less dynamic and less efficient economy.
The other is that the 99 per cent will realize they’ve been sold a bill of goods by their leaders and demand change in ways governments, political parties and employers cannot brush off. People intuitively get it, he says. They just have to muster the political will to act.

Source:
Toronto Star

http://www.thestar.com/

More info about Joseph Stiglitz from Wikipedia:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joseph_Stiglitz


Richard Wilkinson: How economic inequality harms societies
(video duration : 16:55)
http://www.ted.com/talks/view/lang/en//id/1253
(Use this link if you wish to share the video presentation with someone)
Filmed July 2011• Posted October 2011

We feel instinctively that societies with huge income gaps are somehow going wrong. Richard Wilkinson charts the hard data on economic inequality, and shows what gets worse when rich and poor are too far apart: real effects on health, lifespan, even such basic values as trust.

In "The Spirit Level," Richard Wilkinson charts data that proves societies that are more equal are healthier, happier societies.

Richard Wilkinson: Public health researcher (bio)
http://www.ted.com/speakers/richard_wilkinson.html

Source:
TED Talks

http://www.ted.com/

The Price of Inequality and the Myth of Opportunity
http://www.project-syndicate.org/commentary/the-price-of-inequality
June 6, 2012
by Joseph Stiglitz
America likes to think of itself as a land of opportunity, and others view it in much the same light. But, while we can all think of examples of Americans who rose to the top on their own, what really matters are the statistics: to what extent do an individual’s life chances depend on the income and education of his or her parents? Nowadays, these numbers show that the American dream is a myth. There is less equality of opportunity in the United States today than there is in Europe – or, indeed, in any advanced industrial country for which there are data.

This is one of the reasons that America has the highest level of inequality of any of the advanced countries – and its gap with the rest has been widening. In the “recovery” of 2009-2010, the top 1% of US income earners captured 93% of the income growth. Other inequality indicators – like wealth, health, and life expectancy – are as bad or even worse. The clear trend is one of concentration of income and wealth at the top, the hollowing out of the middle, and increasing poverty at the bottom.

[ Joseph E. Stiglitz is a Nobel laureate in economics who served on and later chaired President Bill Clinton’s Council of Economic Advisers, and was Senior Vice President and Chief Economist of the World Bank. He is currently a professor at Columbia University. ]

Source:
Project Syndicate

http://www.project-syndicate.org/
Project Syndicate brings original, engaging, and thought-provoking commentaries by esteemed leaders and thinkers from around the world to readers everywhere. By offering incisive perspectives on our changing world from those who are shaping its economics, politics, science, and culture, Project Syndicate has created an unrivaled venue for informed public debate.

Americans saw wealth plummet 40 percent from 2007 to 2010, Federal Reserve says
http://goo.gl/NRhRi
By Ylan Q. Mui
June 11, 2012
The recent recession wiped out nearly two decades of Americans’ wealth, according to government data released Monday, with ­middle-class families bearing the brunt of the decline.

Source:
Washington Post

http://www.washingtonpost.com/

From
the
New York Times:

Obama Goes on Offensive Over Taxes on Wealthy
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/11/us/politics/obama-to-make-case-for-buffett-rule.html
By Jackie Calmes
April 10, 2012
BOCA RATON, Fla. — All but certain now that his Republican opponent will be Mitt Romney, President Obama has made his proposed “Buffett Rule” minimum tax for the wealthiest Americans like Mr. Romney a centerpiece of his re-election campaign, defying the political risk of being seen as a tax-and-spender by wary voters. With a rousing speech on Tuesday to a receptive university audience of about 5,000 in this battleground state, Mr. Obama defined the coming contest as a clash of philosophies: His argument that tax fairness and the common good demand the richest Americans pay at least as much as middle-income taxpayers do, contrasted with Republicans’ opposition to any tax increases as job killers and class warfare, even at the cost of deep cuts in domestic programs.

---

Mr. Obama and the ‘Buffett Rule’
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/11/opinion/mr-obama-and-the-buffett-rule.html
Editorial
April 10, 2012
President Obama accomplished two things when he made the case on Tuesday for the so-called Buffett Rule, which would require millionaires to pay at least 30 percent of their income in taxes. He persuasively argued that it would be a step toward fairness in a tax code tilted in favor of the wealthiest Americans. Not incidentally, it allowed him to take an implicit shot at his virtually certain opponent, Mitt Romney, both personally and politically.
(...)
The Buffett Rule, which would raise an estimated $50 billion over 10 years, would not make an appreciable dent in the deficit or provide a lot more for essential programs. By comparison, letting the Bush-era tax cuts expire for taxpayers making more than $250,000 a year, as the president has also called for, would raise $800 billion over 10 years. Mr. Obama must ensure that the Buffett Rule does not become a substitute for ending those tax cuts

Source:
New York Times
http://www.nytimes.com/
From
the
New York Times:

Obama Goes on Offensive Over Taxes on Wealthy
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/11/us/politics/obama-to-make-case-for-buffett-rule.html
By Jackie Calmes
April 10, 2012
BOCA RATON, Fla. — All but certain now that his Republican opponent will be Mitt Romney, President Obama has made his proposed “Buffett Rule” minimum tax for the wealthiest Americans like Mr. Romney a centerpiece of his re-election campaign, defying the political risk of being seen as a tax-and-spender by wary voters. With a rousing speech on Tuesday to a receptive university audience of about 5,000 in this battleground state, Mr. Obama defined the coming contest as a clash of philosophies: His argument that tax fairness and the common good demand the richest Americans pay at least as much as middle-income taxpayers do, contrasted with Republicans’ opposition to any tax increases as job killers and class warfare, even at the cost of deep cuts in domestic programs.

---

Mr. Obama and the ‘Buffett Rule’
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/11/opinion/mr-obama-and-the-buffett-rule.html
Editorial
April 10, 2012
President Obama accomplished two things when he made the case on Tuesday for the so-called Buffett Rule, which would require millionaires to pay at least 30 percent of their income in taxes. He persuasively argued that it would be a step toward fairness in a tax code tilted in favor of the wealthiest Americans. Not incidentally, it allowed him to take an implicit shot at his virtually certain opponent, Mitt Romney, both personally and politically.
(...)
The Buffett Rule, which would raise an estimated $50 billion over 10 years, would not make an appreciable dent in the deficit or provide a lot more for essential programs. By comparison, letting the Bush-era tax cuts expire for taxpayers making more than $250,000 a year, as the president has also called for, would raise $800 billion over 10 years. Mr. Obama must ensure that the Buffett Rule does not become a substitute for ending those tax cuts

Source:
New York Times
http://www.nytimes.com/

The rich are different; they get richer
http://goo.gl/1kUID
By Harold Meyerson
March 27, 2012
Occupy Wall Street is not known for the precision of its economic analysis, but new research on income distribution in the United States shows that the group’s sloganeering provides a stunningly accurate picture of the economy. In 2010, according to a study [see the link to the study below] published this month by University of California economist Emmanuel Saez, 93 percent of income growth went to the wealthiest 1 percent of American households, while everyone else divvied up the 7 percent that was left over. Put another way: The most fundamental characteristic of the U.S. economy today is the divide between the 1 percent and the 99 percent.
(...)
Research [see the link to the research report below] by Julia Isaacs of the Brookings Institution, as part of the Economic Mobility Project, has shown that intergenerational mobility in the United States has fallen far below the levels in Germany, Finland, Denmark and other more social democratic nations of Northern Europe.

Source:
Washington Post

http://www.washingtonpost.com/

The study by Saez:

Striking it Richer:
The Evolution of Top Incomes in the United States
(PDF - 136K, 10 pages)
http://elsa.berkeley.edu/~saez/saez-UStopincomes-2010.pdf
Updated with 2009 and 2010 estimates
By Emmanuel Saez
March 2, 2012
Source:
Berkeley
http://elsa.berkeley.edu/

The research report by Isaacs:

International Comparisons of Economic Mobility
http://goo.gl/khV2O
By Julia B. Isaacs
Source:
The Brookings Institution
http://www.brookings.edu

Inequality: The role of unions and race
http://www.policyalternatives.ca/newsroom/updates/inequality-role-unions-and-race
March 8, 2012
The University of Toronto's Richard Florida has an important two-part series (see below) in The Atlantic focusing on what is driving the growing income gap in American cities. In particular, he and colleague Charlotta Mellander look at what is driving the differences in income inequality, since it's not a one-size-fits-all phenomenon, even in the U.S. (...) Florida writes that his findings "suggest that the full story of inequality across American cities goes beyond technology, globalization, skills and wages, and includes unions, race and poverty."
Source of this news release:
Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives (CCPA)
http://www.policyalternatives.ca/

---

Part One:

The Inequality of American Cities
http://www.theatlanticcities.com/jobs-and-economy/2012/03/inequality-american-cities/861/
By Richard Florida
March 5, 2012
Inequality is shaping up to be one of the biggest issues in the 2012 presidential election. The Occupy movement may have waned since last fall, but its focus on the privileges of the top one percent has yet to go away.

Part Two:

The Inequality Puzzle in U.S. Cities
http://www.theatlanticcities.com/jobs-and-economy/2012/03/inequality-puzzle-us-cities/858/
By Richard Florida
March 7, 2012
What lies behind the inequality of American cities? The conventional explanation blames the rise of the globalized, knowledge economy which has eliminated family-supporting factory jobs and cleaved the workforce into high-paying, high-skill and low-paying, low-skill jobs. But ...wage inequality only explains a very small part of income inequality. How to explain this apparent discrepancy? What other factors lie behind rising inequality across America's cities? To answer that question, I reviewed several powerful theories that try to explain persistent economic and social disadvantage across cities.
* The first focuses not just on trends in skills and wages, but on shifts in populations. (...)
* A second calls attention to declining rates of unionization. (...)
* A third focuses on the intersection of race, poverty and economic disadvantage.(...)

Related paper:

The Inequality of Cities: Differences and Determinants of Wage and Income Inequity across U.S. Metros
January 19, 2012
By Richard Florida and Charlotta Mellander

Abstract
http://goo.gl/eqUz5
This paper examines the geographic variation in wage inequality and income inequality across US metropolitan areas and analyzes the factors associated with each. A large literature focuses on the role of skill-biased technical change in shaping inequality; other recent studies have noted the connection between inequality and metro size. We map both types of inequality and conduct regression analyses of the determinants of each.
[more...]

Complete paper (PDF - 496K, 26 pages)
http://research.martinprosperity.org/papers/Inequality-of-cities-formatted.pdf

Source:
Richard Florida is Senior Editor at The Atlantic [ http://www.theatlantic.com/ ] and
Director of The Martin Prosperity Institute [
http://martinprosperity.org/ ]
The Lloyd & Delphine Martin Prosperity Institute is the world’s leading think-tank on the role of sub-national factors – location, place and city-regions – in global economic prosperity. We take an integrated view of prosperity, looking beyond economic measures to include the importance of quality of place and the development of people’s creative potential.

March 9, 2012
From the Off the Charts Blog

(Center on Budget and Policy Priorities):

On income inequality:
http://www.offthechartsblog.org/even-in-a-down-year-top-1-percent-had-more-total-income-than-bottom-50-percent/
Chuck Marr showed that even in 2009, a “down” year for high earners, the top 1 percent of households had more total Adjusted Gross Income than the bottom 50 percent.

On the share of the nation’s income going to the top 1 percent:
http://www.offthechartsblog.org/incomes-bouncing-back-at-the-top/
Chad Stone noted that the share of the nation’s income going to the top 1 percent rebounded in 2010, and he contrasted those gains with the increase in the number of people in severe poverty in recent years [ http://www.offthechartsblog.org/things-looking-up-at-the-top-down-at-the-bottom/ ].

More on the 1 percent:
http://www.offthechartsblog.org/income-growth-at-the-top-mostly-occurring-at-the-tippy-top/
Hannah Shaw noted that the income gains for the top 1 percent in 2010 occurred mostly at the very top of that group.

On extreme poverty:
http://www.offthechartsblog.org/under-2-dollars-a-day-in-america-part-1/
We wrote a three-part series on extreme poverty, and Arloc Sherman highlighted a new study showing that the number of families living on less than $2 per person a day more than doubled in the last 15 years.

Source:
Off the Charts Blog

http://www.offthechartsblog.org/
Center on Budget and Policy Priorities
http://www.cbpp.org/
The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities is one of the nation’s premier policy organizations working at the federal and state levels on fiscal policy and public programs that affect low- and moderate-income families and individuals.

Inequality rises across the G20 as economic growth leaves the poor behind
Strong economic growth since 1990 has failed to lift people out of poverty in almost every G20 country, according to a study by international agency Oxfam.

http://www.oxfam.ca/news-and-publications/news/inequality-rises-across-g20-economic-growth-leaves-poor-behind
News Release
18 January 2012
Left behind by the G20? shows the importance of policies to address inequality if growth is to benefit those living in poverty. (...) Since 1990, income inequality has increased in 14 of the 18 Group of 20 countries for which there are comparable statistics, says Oxfam’s report card. Inequality increased fastest in Russia, China, Japan and South Africa, with Canada following close behind.

The OXFAM report:

Left behind by the G20? How inequality and environmental degradation
threaten to exclude poor people from the benefits of economic growth
(PDF - 648K, 47 pages)
http://goo.gl/8x0qe
January 2012
Average global income per person has doubled over the last forty years.2 The proportion of the world’s population living in poverty has fallen significantly over the same period, but the absolute number remains high: 1.3 billion people still live on less than $1.25 a day. More than half of these women and men are in G20 countries. [Source : Introduction, p. 6]

Source:
OXFAM Canada
http://www.oxfam.ca/
Oxfam Canada is a member of the international confederation Oxfam. Oxfam has 15 national Oxfam agencies that together work in 92 countries. Oxfam Canada works with partner organizations in developing countries; tackling the root causes of poverty and inequity and helping people to create self-reliant and sustainable communities.

Also from OXFAM Canada:

Oxfam Canada Annual Report 2011
http://www.oxfam.ca/news-and-publications/publications-and-reports/oxfam-canada-annual-report-2011
Accountability. It’s a commitment Oxfam takes very seriously – to our partners, to our donors, but most importantly, to women and men, girls and boys living in poverty.

Related link:

Poverty lingers in prosperous G20, Oxfam says
http://www.thestar.com/news/world/article/1117866
January 18, 2012
By Olivia Ward
The image of the G20’s rising giants is enticing: Chinese tourists trotting the globe, Indians lining up for electronic luxuries, Russian petrodollars fuelling designer boutiques. But the reality for many in the world’s most prosperous countries is far grimmer, says a report released Thursday by the international charity Oxfam. And economic growth numbers tell only a fraction of the story.
Source:
Toronto Star
http://www.thestar.com/

Economic Inequality
http://www.economicinequality.ca/

Economic inequality is a big subject, and a lot of energy from a lot of people is needed to create more equality. Our organization is creating opportunities for public discussion of the kinds of policies we need and the kinds of actions (by us and by others) that are required.

Economic Inequality: What Do We Do?
Public Meeting: Tuesday January 24th
http://www.economicinequality.ca/2012/01/09/bulletin-january-2012/
Public Meeting
Tuesday, January 24 (7 pm – 9 pm)
Trinity St. Paul’s Centre
427 Bloor St. West (one block west of Spadina)
Toronto
This summer the Occupy movement rekindled widespread interest in the growing income gap in our society. You are invited to the first in a series of public forums on the subject of economic inequality.

Speakers:

Linda McQuaig, Toronto Star columnist and co-author of The Trouble with Billionaires
Ed Waitzer, partner of law firm Stikeman Elliott, former chair of Ontario Securities Commission, and professor at Osgoode Hall Law School and Schulich School of Business.

Speakers will be followed by an audience discussion moderated by John Sewell.
Be part of this important discussion to plan ways to achieve a more equal society.
This event is wheelchair accessible
Free – donations welcome

NEW from the
Childcare Resource and Research Unit (CRRU):
http://www.childcarecanada.org

A historical snapshot of inequality in Canada
http://goo.gl/Vm4XX
6 Jan 2012
... a look back at the inequalities between various groups that have been constant themes in Canada; a universal system of high quality ECEC has a key role to play in addressing these inequities.

Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD)
report finds income inequality rising in Canada
http://goo.gl/RbStb
December 5, 2011
A new report finds that the gap between the rich and the poor just keeps getting wider in Canada. The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development released a report on Monday looking at the rise of inequality in countries around the world. Particularly since the mid-1990s in Canada, the report states, the disparity between the rich and the poor has been growing.
Source:
CTV.ca
http://www.ctv.ca/

From the OECD:

Society: Governments must tackle record gap between rich and poor, says OECD
http://www.oecd.org/document/40/0,3746,en_21571361_44315115_49166760_1_1_1_1,00.html
News Release
December 5, 2011
The gap between rich and poor in OECD countries has reached its highest level for over over 30 years, and governments must act quickly to tackle inequality, according to a new OECD report.
Divided We Stand: Why Inequality Keeps Rising” finds that the average income of the richest 10% is now about nine times that of the poorest 10 % across the OECD.

Divided We Stand:
Why Inequality Keeps Rising
(US$ 105)
December 2011
Free preview of the first 100 pages of the report:
http://goo.gl/ix6xH

Divided We Stand
Why Inequality Keeps Rising
An Overview of Growing Income
Inequalities in OECD Countries:
Main Findings (PDF - 244K, 25 pages)
http://www.oecd.org/dataoecd/40/12/49170449.pdf

Purchase the report from the OECD Bookshop: (US$ 105)
http://www.oecdbookshop.org/oecd/display.asp?sf1=identifiers&st1=9789264111639
Scroll down the page to see the table of contents.

Country note : Canada (PDF - 500K, 2 pages)
http://www.oecd.org/dataoecd/50/52/49177689.pdf
Income inequality among working-age persons has been rising in Canada, particularly since the mid-1990s. According to the latest data, the level of inequality is above the OECD average but still below that of the US.

All country notes:
http://goo.gl/unxGD
- includes Australia - Canada - France (en Français & English) - Germany - Italy (in Italian & English) - Japan (in Japanese & English) - Mexico (in Spanish & English) - Spain (in Spanish & English) - United Kingdom - United States

Source:
Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD)
http://www.oecd.org/

---

Related links:

Mind the OECD Credibility Gap
http://www.progressive-economics.ca/2011/12/06/mind-the-oecd-credibility-gap/
By Andrew Jackson
December 6, 2011
The OECD report on inequality is well worth a careful read. It bolsters, through careful empirical and cross country analysis, two key arguments long advanced by the labour movement and progressive economists:
1. Key trends in the labour market – widening wage disparity between top earners and the rest, and the disproportionate growth of precarious jobs – are the major driving force behind rising inequality of individual earnings which has in turn been a major force behind increased inequality of family incomes
2. The impact of growing earnings inequality on the distribution of family income has been compounded by major regressive changes to the redistributive role of the tax and transfer system. “Globalization” is found to have played a lesser role – though a link is drawn from greater competition and closer economic integration with developing countries to the erosion of pro equality institutions (eg. unions and collective bargaining) and policies (eg labour market regulation, and tax and transfer policies.)
(...)
It is ironic, though, that this OECD report (emanating from the employment and social policy side of the organization, DELSA) flags as the underlying causes of inequality precisely those policies which the economic side (ECO) advocated for so strenuously through at least the 1990s and much of the past decade as well.
(...)
[In the 1990s] The OECD endorsed the draconian Liberal Government cuts to social programs – cuts to UI and cuts in transfers to the provinces to finance social assistance – which are now seen as a key driving force of the surge in inequality in Canada which began in the mid 1990s. The OECD also raised no criticism of personal income tax changes which increased after tax income inequality, notably the cut from 75% to 50% of capital gains included in income tax. Now they tell us that the Canadian tax/transfer system offsets only 40% of any increase in market income inequality – one of the lowest proportions in the OECD – compared to 70% in the mid 1990s when Canada’s redistributive effort was at near Nordic levels!

Source:
Progressive Economics Forum
http://www.progressive-economics.ca/

From the
Globe and Mail:

Income inequality: deep, complex and growing
http://goo.gl/Yw1tV
By Jeffrey Simpson
December 9, 2011
(...) Inequality has been growing in Canada for many years; correcting for it will not be easy or fast. The factors making Canada a less equal society are deep and complex. Some are beyond the reach of government. Canada is not alone in becoming more unequal. A comprehensive report by the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development has just explained how inequalities have been widening in almost all of its member countries, even the Scandinavian ones.

[ 200 comments : http://goo.gl/L4tLv ]

OECD calls time on trickle down theory
http://goo.gl/5Wyaq
By Nicholas Timmins
December 5, 2011
Trickle down theory is dead. The belief fostered by Ronald Reagan in the U.S. and Margaret Thatcher in the U.K. in the 1980s, that if the rich got richer, their income and wealth would trickle down the income scale so that a rising tide lifted all the boats, has had the last rites pronounced on it – by the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development.

And now, for something completely different,
from the poison pen of Margaret Wente:

The poor are doing better than you think
http://goo.gl/jMTqg
By Margaret Wente
December 10, 2011
The news on income and inequality is depressing. The rich are getting richer, the poor are getting left behind, and the middle class is getting shafted. For most people, real incomes have been flat for decades – or so we’re told. This week, the OECD weighed in with a new report that Canada’s wealth gap is at a 30-year high. (...) In Ontario, ... 65 per cent of the bottom fifth of families by income have air conditioning. Seventy per cent have DVD players, 65 per cent have cable TV, 56 per cent have home computers and 98.9 per cent have colour TVs."

[ 555 comments : http://goo.gl/LjEsN ]
My favourite comment (by Gilles):
"Color TV, Car and wow...I guess compared to some Bedouin, our poor are doing great !! (...) I used to read the Globe as a counterbalance to some of the other papers but with this type of dimwitted, elitist, self serving, morally bankrupt drivel being put to post, I really have to wonder if the G&M has finally gone around the bend of reality. Shame on her and more importantly shame on the Globe & Mail for continuing to humour this woman by paying her to write nonsense."

Source:
Globe and Mail
http://www.theglobeandmail.com/

---

Oh, and one last comment:

According to Wente, "...the incomes of U.S. middle-class families rose by more than 50 per cent in real terms between 1980 and 2009. Poor families fared almost as well."

According to this U.S. inflation calculator:
http://www.westegg.com/inflation/
...and this Canadian inflation calculator:
http://www.bankofcanada.ca/rates/related/inflation-calculator/
...the cost of living went up by 150% from 1980 to 2009 in both the U.S. and Canada.
[So much for fair and balanced reporting. G&M = Fox News North]

From the
Center on Budget and Policy Priorities:
http://www.cbpp.org/

Income Inequality Series: Parts 1-5
http://www.offthechartsblog.org/tag/income-inequality-series/
November 28, 2011

A Guide to Statistics on Historical Trends in Income Inequality (14 pages)
http://www.cbpp.org/cms/index.cfm?fa=view&id=3629
By Chad Stone, Hannah Shaw, Danilo Trisi and Arloc Sherman
November 28, 2011
This guide consists of four sections. The first describes the commonly used sources and statistics on income and discusses their relative strengths and limitations in understanding trends in income and inequality. The second provides an overview of the trends revealed in those key data sources. The third and fourth sections supply additional information on wealth, which complements the income data as a measure of how the most well-off Americans are doing; and poverty, which measures how the least well-off Americans are doing.

Hardship in America Series: Parts 1-4
http://www.offthechartsblog.org/tag/hardship-in-america-series
November 21, 2011

More CBPP reports on Poverty and Income
http://www.cbpp.org/research/index.cfm?fa=topic&id=36

Source:
Center on Budget and Policy Priorities (CBPP):
http://www.cbpp.org/
CBPP is one of the nation’s premier policy organizations working at the federal and state levels on fiscal policy and public programs that affect low- and moderate-income

Oligarchy, American Style
By Paul Krugman
November 3, 2011
Inequality is back in the news, largely thanks to Occupy Wall Street, but with an assist from the Congressional Budget Office. And you know what that means: It’s time to roll out the obfuscators! Anyone who has tracked this issue over time knows what I mean. Whenever growing income disparities threaten to come into focus, a reliable set of defenders tries to bring back the blur. Think tanks put out reports claiming that inequality isn’t really rising, or that it doesn’t matter. Pundits try to put a more benign face on the phenomenon, claiming that it’s not really the wealthy few versus the rest, it’s the educated versus the less educated. (...) Some pundits are still trying to dismiss concerns about rising inequality as somehow foolish. But the truth is that the whole nature of our society is at stake.

[ More information about Paul Krugman + links to more of his articles ]

[ Definition of "oligarchy" from Wikipedia]

[ Comments (419) ]

Source:
New York Times

Australia

Are the rich getting richer and the poor getting poorer?
28 September 2011
By Peter Whiteford
Wealth seems to be more equally distributed than income in Australia, writes Peter Whiteford, but interpreting the data can be complex. (...) it is important to monitor trends in inequality, since without reliable statistics we would not know enough about what is happening to different groups in Australian society. In order to understand real trends we need reliable statistics, which is why we should be grateful to the Australian Bureau of Statistics for continuing to collect high-quality data on income and wealth.

Peter Whiteford is a professor in the Social Policy Research Centre at the University of New South Wales

Source:
Inside Story
Current affairs and culture from Australia and beyond

Related link:

Australian Policy Online

From ConnectThe DotsUSA:

---

ConnectThe DotsUSA is about civics and policy basics
to inoculate folks against silly and dangerous rhetoric.
It's the antidote to bumper-sticker politics.

Five Facts You Should Know About the Wealthiest One Percent of Americans
It may shock you to learn exactly how wealthy this top 1 percent of Americans is.

October 4, 2011
As the ongoing occupation of Wall Street by hundreds of protesters enters its third week — and as protests spread to other cities such as Boston and Los Angeles — demonstrators have endorsed a new slogan: “We are the 99 percent.” This slogan refers to an economic struggle between 99 percent of Americans and the richest 1 percent of Americans, who are increasingly accumulating a greater share of the national wealth to the detriment of the middle class.

Just the Facts:
1. The Top 1 Percent of Americans Owns 40 Percent of the Nation’s Wealth
2. The Top 1 Percent of Americans Take Home 24 Percent of National Income
3. The Top 1 Percent Of Americans Own Half of the Country’s Stocks, Bonds and Mutual Funds
4. The Top 1 Percent Of Americans Have Only 5 Percent of the Nation’s Personal Debt
5. The Top 1 Percent are Taking In More of the Nation’s Income Than at Any Other Time Since the 1920s

Source:
AlterNet
AlterNet is an award-winning news magazine and online community that creates original journalism and amplifies the best of hundreds of other independent media sources. AlterNet’s aim is to inspire action and advocacy on the environment, human rights and civil liberties, social justice, media, health care issues, and more.

Related links:

We are the 99 percent
We are the 99 percent. We are getting kicked out of our homes. We are forced to choose between groceries and rent. We are denied quality medical care. We are suffering from environmental pollution. We are working long hours for little pay and no rights, if we're working at all. We are getting nothing while the other 1 percent is getting everything. We are the 99 percent.

Occupy Wall St.
OccupyWallSt.org is the unofficial de facto online resource for the ongoing protests happening on Wall Street. We are an affinity group committed to doing technical support work for resistance movements.

OCCUPY TOGETHER is an unofficial hub for all of the events springing up across the country in solidarity with Occupy Wall St.

American Income Equality Off the Rails- October 2010 (Malcom Gladwell on FORA.TV)
+ September 19 (2011) article ranking income inequality in the U.S. and other countries (The Atlantic)

Malcolm Gladwell is a Canadian journalist, bestselling author, and speaker, currently writing for the New Yorker magazine.
This video presentation is from the 2010 New Yorker Festival.

Related link:

U.S. Ranks Near Bottom on Income Inequality
September 19, 2011
- includes the full list of indicators ("data points") considered and sources
Perhaps the most politically contentious aspect of President Barack Obama's new proposed legislation, aimed to revive the still-struggling U.S. economy, is $1.5 trillion in tax increases, much of it aimed at wealthy Americans. The White House is calling this "the Buffett rule." Named for super-investor Warren Buffett's complaint that he pays a lower tax rate than some of his most menial wage employees, the legislation would be designed to ensure that anyone making more than $1 million per year will pay at least the same rate as middle-income taxpayers.
Source:
The Atlantic

(NOTE : The following links are to a report from late 2008 that I just [29-07-11] found on the OECD website)

Growing Unequal? Income Distribution and Poverty in OECD Countries
October 2008
- includes media briefings, country notes and presentations
Growing Unequal? brings together a range of analyses on the distribution of economic resources in OECD countries. The evidence on income distribution and poverty covers, for the first time, all 30 OECD countries in the mid-2000s, while information on trends extending back to the mid-1980s is provided for around two-thirds of the countries. The report also describes inequalities in a range of domains (such as household wealth, consumption patterns, in-kind public services) that are typically excluded from conventional discussion about the distribution of economic resources among individuals and households.

Free preview of the complete book (310 pages)
[ Buy the book (U.S. $98) - from the OECD Bookshop ]

Related article
in the OECD Observer:

Unequal growth, unequal recession?
Whether the burden of any recession is felt by some social groups and countries more than others depends largely on public policy. Will government step up to the plate? New actions are needed

Other related links:

Country reviews : Canada
- statistical profile - economic forecast summary - country review - working papers
Source:
Country reviews (34 OECD countries)

Income Distribution and Poverty <=== links to dozens of free resources
[ Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development ]

Unions and Inequality
By Andrew Jackson
June 27, 2011
An important paper by Bruce Western and Jake Rosenfeld which is forthcoming in the American Journal of Sociology finds that the decline in private sector union density in the US (from 34% to 8% for men, and from 16% to 6% for women) explains one fifth to one third of the increase in inequality of hourly earnings over the period 1973 to 2007. This shows declining union density to be a much greater causal factor than most studies have found.
The novel contribution of the authors is to show empirically through a sophisticated quantitative analysis that a fall from high to lower union density in industrial/regional clusters is associated with rising levels of wage inequality among non union workers in those clusters.
Source:
Progressive Economics Forum

The paper:

Unions, Norms, and the Rise in
American Wage Inequality
(PDF - 283K, 48 pages)
By Bruce Western and Jake Rosenfeld
March, 2011
"(...) We revisited the effect of declining union membership on wage inequality, arguing that unions not only equalized the wages of union members; they
also equalized the nonunion wage distribution by threatening union organization and buttressing norms for fair pay.
Source:
Department of Sociology
[ Harvard University ]

---

- Go to the Union Links page:
http://www.canadiansocialresearch.net/unionbkmrk.htm


Working Group on Extreme Inequality
The Working Group on Extreme Inequality began coming together in 2007. Many of the organizations involved in the Working Group had, over the years, been active in organizing against poverty and economic insecurity. That effort had helped us understand that the fight against inequality, to make significant headway, has to both “raise the floor” and challenge the concentrated wealth and power that increasingly sit at the top of our economic ladder. (...) Our work revolves around mobilization, education and advocacy.
- includes links to:
* About Us * Resources * Links * Why Extreme Inequality Matters * Racial Dimensions of Inequality * Tools for Narrowing the Great Divide * Commentary & Analysis * Take Action * Sign Up


Historical information on income inequality
from the U.S. Census Bureau:

The Changing Shape of the Nation's Income Distribution, 1947 to 1998
By Arthur F. Jones Jr.
and Daniel H. Weinberg
June 2000
Are the rich getting richer and the poor getting poorer?

Complete report (PDF - 228K, 11 pages)
* Tables and Figures
* Historical Tables (1967 to 2009)
NOTE : The first table in the list is a PDF file and the rest are Excel files,

---

A Brief Look at Post-War U.S. Income Inequality
By Daniel H. Weinberg
June 1996

Complete report (PDF - 53K, 4 pages)
* Tables and Figures
* Historical Tables
* Narrative on Income Inequality (Middle Class)

Source:
Income Inequality
[ Income Data ]
[ U.S. Census Bureau ]


The University of Texas Inequality Project is a small research group concerned with measuring and explaining movements of inequality in wages and earnings and patterns of industrial changes around the world. Our work so far has emphasized two techniques: the use of Theil's T statistic to compute inequality indexes from industrial data, and a combination of cluster analysis on rates of wage change and discriminant analysis to isolate the principal time patterns in changing wage structures

Education is not the cure for
high unemployment or for income inequality
(PDF - 287K, 26 pages)
EPI Briefing Paper #286
By Lawrence Mishel
January 12, 2011
With signs pointing to persistent high unemployment and a recovery even weaker than those of the early 1990s and 2000s, it is becoming common to hear in the media and among some policy makers the claim that lingering unemployment is not cyclical but “structural.” In this story, the jobs problem is not a lack of demand for workers but rather a mismatch between workers’ skills and employers’ needs. Another version of the skills mismatch is also being told about the future: we face an impending skills shortage, particularly a shortfall of college graduates, after the economy returns to full employment.
Source:
Economic Policy Institute

Related link:

Degrees and Dollars
By Paul Krugman
March 6, 2011
It is a truth universally acknowledged that education is the key to economic success. Everyone knows that the jobs of the future will require ever higher levels of skill. That’s why, in an appearance Friday with former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, President Obama declared that “If we want more good news on the jobs front then we’ve got to make more investments in education.” But what everyone knows is wrong. (...) The fact is that since 1990 or so the U.S. job market has been characterized not by a general rise in the demand for skill, but by “hollowing out”: both high-wage and low-wage employment have grown rapidly, but medium-wage jobs — the kinds of jobs we count on to support a strong middle class — have lagged behind. And the hole in the middle has been getting wider.
(...)
So if we want a society of broadly shared prosperity, education isn’t the answer — we’ll have to go about building that society directly. We need to restore the bargaining power that labor has lost over the last 30 years, so that ordinary workers as well as superstars have the power to bargain for good wages. We need to guarantee the essentials, above all health care, to every citizen. What we can’t do is get where we need to go just by giving workers college degrees, which may be no more than tickets to jobs that don’t exist or don’t pay middle-class wages.
Source:
New York Times


The United States of Inequality
Trying to understand income inequality, the most profound change in American society in your lifetime.

By Timothy Noah
September 14, 2010
In the late 1970s, a half-century trend toward growing income equality reversed itself. Ever since, U.S. incomes have grown more unequal. Middle-class incomes stagnated while the top 1 percent's share of national income climbed to 24 percent. Middle-income workers no longer benefit from productivity increases, and upward mobility, long the saving grace of the American economy, has faltered. Why is this happening? In the following 10-part series, Slate's Timothy Noah weighs eight possible causes of what Princeton economist Paul Krugman has labeled the Great Divergence. This 30-year trend "may represent the most significant change in American society in your lifetime," Noah writes, "and it's not a change for the better."
---
[ NOTE : this series ran in Slate Magazine from September 3 to September 15, 2010. Click the link above to access each of the ten parts below. The series is also available as a single PDF file, which I don't recommend because the text contains many useful links to related resources that aren't clickable in the PDF version. Gilles]
___

Part 1 : Introducing the Great Divergence: Trying to understand income inequality.
Part 2 : The Usual Suspects Are Innocent: Neither race nor gender nor the breakdown of the American family created the Great Divergence.
Part 3 : Did Immigration Create the Great Divergence? Why we can't blame income inequality on the post-1965 immigration surge.
Part 4 : Did Computers Create Inequality? No. The tech boom's impact was no greater than that of previous technological upheavals during the 20th century.
Part 5 : Can We Blame Income Inequality on Republicans? Yes, but for the very richest beneficiaries the trend has been bipartisan.
Part 6 : The Great Divergence and the Death of Organized Labor: How has the decline of the union contributed to income inequality?
Part 7 : The Great Divergence and International Trade: Trade didn't create inequality, and then it did.
Part 8 : The Stinking Rich and the Great Divergence: Executive compensation took off in the 1980s and 1990s. Is it to blame?
Part 9 : How the Decline in K-12 Education Enriches College Graduates: When the workforce needed to be smarter, Americans got dumber.
Part 10 : Why we can't ignore growing income inequality: It undermines the ideal of e pluribus unum
Source:
Slate Magazine


The 12 States Of America
Since 1980, income inequality has fractured the nation.

By Dante Chinni and James Gimpel
[Chinni and Gimpel are also co-authors of Our Patchwork Nation - see "Related link" below.]
Most stories about inequality in America miss an important point: rising disparities are not just about investment bankers versus auto workers. They’re about entire communities of “winners” and “losers.” And as these communities continue to diverge, the idea of “an American economy” looks more and more like an anachronism. We analyzed reams of demographic, economic, cultural, and political data to break the nation’s 3,141 counties into 12 statistically distinct “types of place.” When we look at family income over the past 30 years through that prism, the full picture of the income divide becomes clearer—and much starker.

Interactive Map: Income Inequality in the U.S.
Since 1980, income inequality has fractured the nation. Click the icons just above the map of the USA to see each of the dozen states*, which counties belong to them and how median income has changed from 1980 to 2009.
----------
* "States" include : Moneyed Burbs - Minority Central - Military Bastions - Evangelical Epicenters - Tractor Country - Campus and Careers + six more states
----------

Source:
The Atlantic Magazine : April 2011 issue

Related link:

Our Patchwork Nation
Co-authored by Dante Chinni and James Gimpel
Patchwork Nation is a reporting project of the Jefferson Institute that aims to explore what is happening in the United States by examining different kinds of communities over time. The effort divides America's 3,141 counties into 12 community types based on certain demographic characteristics, such as income level, racial composition, employment and religion. You can read about the methodology of the project on the methodology page.

---

It's the Inequality, Stupid
Eleven charts that explain everything that's wrong with America.

March 2011
A huge share of the nation's economic growth over the past 30 years has gone to the top one-hundredth of one percent, who now make an average of $27 million per household. The average income for the bottom 90 percent of us? $31,244.
NOTE: includes links to sources of all data used in the charts
Source:
Mother Jones, March/April 2011 issue
[ Mother Jones home page ]
Mother Jones is a nonprofit news organization that specializes in investigative, political, and social justice reporting. We currently have two main "platforms": an award-winning bimonthly national magazine (circulation 240,000), and a website featuring new, original reporting 24-7.

---

From Stanford University:

Twenty Facts About U.S. Inequality that Everyone Should Know
Links to 20 graphics:
*
Wage Inequality * CEO pay * Wealth Inequality *
Education Wage Premium * Gender Pay Gaps * Occupational Sex Segregation * Racial Gaps in Education * Racial Discrimination * Poverty * Residential Segregation * Health Insurance * Intragenerational Income Mobility * Bad Jobs * Discourage Workers * Homelessness * Intergenerational Income Mobility * Deregulation of the Labor Market * Job Losses * Immigrants and Inequality * Productivity and Real Income

See also:

Key Issues in Poverty & Inequality
- incl. links to online resources
organized under the following topics:
[NOTE : Only a few selected links are highlighted below.
To access links to all topics, click the Key Issues links above.]
* Children * Citizenship & Civil Rights * Conflict - War & Instability * Consumption & Lifestyles * Crime & the Legal System * Development Economics * Disabilities * Discrimination & Prejudice * Education * Elites * Environment * Gender * Globalization * Health & Mental Health * History of Inequality * Immigration * Income & Wealth * Labor Markets * Land - Housing & Homelessness * Lifecourse - Family & Demography * Measurement & Methodology * Organizations * Philosophy * Policy * Politics & Political Economy * Poverty * Public Opinion & Attitudes * Race & Ethnicity * Sexual Orientation * Social Class & Occupations * Social Mobility * Social Networks * Theory * Transportation * Future of Inequality

Source:
Stanford Center for the Study of Poverty and Inequality
The Stanford Center for the Study of Poverty and Inequality has five objectives: to monitor trends in poverty and inequality, to support scientific analysis of poverty and inequality, to develop science-based policy on poverty and inequality, to disseminate data and research on poverty and inequality, and to train the next generation of scholars, policy analysts, and politicians
[ Stanford University ]

Income Gaps Between Very Rich and Everyone Else
More Than Tripled In Last Three Decades, New Data Show

By Arloc Sherman and Chad Stone
June 25, 2010
HTML version
PDF version
(516K, 7 pages)
The gaps in after-tax income between the richest 1 percent of Americans and the middle and poorest fifths of the country more than tripled between 1979 and 2007 (the period for which these data are available), according to recent data from the Congressional Budget Office. Taken together with prior research, the new data suggest greater income concentration at the top of the income scale than at any time since 1928.

Top 1% Leaving Others in the Dust
June 25, 2010
After-tax incomes nearly quadrupled for the top 1 percent of Americans in the last three decades, while barely rising among middle- and lower-income households, according to new data from the Congressional Budget Office.
(...) The new CBO data — the most comprehensive numbers available on income inequality — only go through 2007, so they don’t show the impact of the recession and the stock market plunge. These events may have reduced inequality somewhat by shrinking incomes the most at the top, as the bursting of the dot.com bubble did a decade ago

Source:
Off the Charts Blog
[ Center on Budget and Policy Priorities ]

The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities is a nonprofit, nonpartisan policy organization working at the federal and state levels on fiscal policy and public programs that affect low- and moderate-income families and individuals.

Related links:

Average Federal Tax Rates in 2007 (PDF - 65K, 7 pages)
June 2010
Source:
Congressional Budget Office

Income Gaps Hit Record Levels In 2006, New Data Show
Rich-Poor Gap Tripled Between 1979 and 2006
April 17, 2009
By Arloc Sherman
"New data from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) show that in 2006, the top 1 percent of households had a larger share of the nation’s after-tax income, and the middle and bottom fifths of households had smaller shares, than in any year since 1979, the first year the CBO data cover. As a result, the gaps in after-tax incomes between households in the top 1 percent and those in the middle and bottom fifths were the widest on record."

HTML - http://www.cbpp.org/cms/index.cfm?fa=view&id=2789
PDF - http://www.cbpp.org/files/4-17-09inc.pdf
(6pp.)

Source:
Center on Budget and Policy Priorities

The Review of Income and Wealth, 1966-2000
Journal of the International Association for Research in Income and Wealth
"The major objectives of The Review of Income and Wealth are the furthering of research on national and economic and social accounting, including the development of concepts and definitions for the measurement and analysis of income and wealth, the development and further integration of systems of economic and social statistics, and related problems of statistical methodology"
- incl. links to full text of back issues of the journal from 1966 to 2000, with several dozen studies in each issue
- wide range of topics, including : income inequality - measuring poverty and deprivation - pension wealth - income mobility - how best to measure welfare, real income, and output - poverty indices and policy analysis - relative or absolute poverty lines - demographic trends - much more...
Source:
International Association for Research in Income and Wealth (IARIW)
IARIW's major objectives:
- the furthering of research on economic and social accounting, including the development of concepts and definitions for the measurement and analysis of income and wealth
- the development and further integration of systems of economic and social statistics
- related problems of statistical methodology

August 25, 2008
Inequality Matters
Kate Bell provides analysis of new research that shows it’s not just poverty that affects children’s outcomes—it’s inequality, too.
Source:
Center for American Progress Task Force on Poverty

Our Inequality of Outcomes
By Steven Pearlstein
August 27, 2008
Hey, good news on the income front: The Census Bureau reported yesterday that median earnings for full-time male workers rose by $1,653 last year, to $45,113, after adjusting for inflation. Another year like that, and maybe the typical male worker will finally catch up to where he was in 1973.
Source:
Washington Post

PULLING APART: A State-by-State Analysis of Income Trends
April 2008
by Jared Bernstein, Elizabeth McNichol, and Andrew Nicholas

"The gap between the richest and poorest families...grew significantly in most states over the past two decades...In fact, the nation’s longstanding trend of growing inequality accelerated since the late 1990s as incomes fell for poor families in a number of states."

Press Release (with state contacts):
Income Inequality Grew in Most States Over Past Two Decades: Low-Income Families Lost Ground Since Late 1990s
April 9, 2008
http://www.cbpp.org/4-9-08sfp-pr.htm
http://www.cbpp.org/4-9-08sfp-pr.pdf (5pp.)

Report:
http://www.cbpp.org/4-9-08sfp.htm (executive summary)
http://www.cbpp.org/4-9-08sfp.pdf (74pp.)

State-by-State Fact Sheets:
http://www.cbpp.org/4-9-08sfp-states.htm

State Data Tables:
http://www.cbpp.org/08state-datatables.xls

Source:
Center for American Progress Task Force on Poverty

Income inequality hits record levels, new CBO data show
Incomes Rose $180,000 for Top 1 Percent in 2005 But Just $400 for Middle-Income Households

December 14, 2007
By Arloc Sherman
[PDF version - 4 pages]
Real after-tax incomes jumped by an average of nearly $180,000 for the top 1 percent of households in 2005, while rising just $400 for middle-income households and $200 for lower-income households, according to new data from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO). Taken together with prior research, the new data indicate that income is now more concentrated at the top than at any time since 1929.
Other highlights of the CBO data show that as of 2005:
* The share of the nation’s total after-tax income going to the top 1 percent of households more than doubled and hit the highest level on record (with data back to 1979).
* The share of national after-tax income going to the middle fifth of households (the middle 20 percent) was the smallest on record.
* Similarly, the share of national after-income tax going to households in the bottom fifth was the smallest on record.
The $180,000 average income gain for these households in 2005 is more than three times the average middle-income household’s total income.

Source:
Center on Budget and Policy Priorities (CBPP)

Also from CBPP:

New CBO Data show income inequality continues to widen:
After-Tax-Income for Top 1 Percent Rose by $146,000 in 2004

January 23, 2007
By Arloc Sherman and Aviva Aron-Dine
The Congressional Budget Office recently released extensive data on household incomes for 2004.[1] CBO issues the most comprehensive and authoritative data available on the levels of and changes in incomes and taxes for different income groups, capturing trends at the very top of the income scale that are not shown in Census data.

Wage Inequality, Earnings Inequality and Poverty
in the U.S. Over the Last Quarter of the Twentieth Century

Peter Gottschalk (Boston College), Sheldon Danziger (University of Michigan)
This paper tracks distributional changes over the last quarter of the twentieth century. We focus on three conceptually distinct distributions: the distribution of wages, the distribution of annual earnings and the distribution of total family income adjusted for family size. We show that all three distributions became less equal during the last half of the 1970's and the 1980's. This was, however, not the case during the 1990's. Wage inequality stabilized, earnings inequality declined and family income inequality actually continued to rise. We decompose changes in family income inequality over the last quarter century and show that roughly half of the increase is accounted for by changes in the distribution of earnings. This suggests that further research on family income inequality should pay as much attention to changes in the distribution of other income sources as to factors affecting the labor market.
Complete report
(PDF file - 2.5MB, 61 pages)
May 2003
Source:
eScholarship@BC [Boston College)
A Digital Institutional Repository for Boston College

What about the wealth gap in the U.S.?

A September 2012 study [ http://stateofworkingamerica.org/subjects/wealth/?reader ] by the left-of-center Economic Policy Institute [ http://www.epi.org/ ], a research group in Washington, has found that the top 1 percent of households now hold a larger share of overall wealth than the bottom 90 percent does.

Of the 1%, by the 1%, for the 1%
May 2011 issue of Vanity Fair
Americans have been watching protests against oppressive regimes that concentrate massive wealth in the hands of an elite few. Yet in our own democracy, 1 percent of the people take nearly a quarter of the nation’s income—an inequality even the wealthy will come to regret.
Source:
Vanity Fair - May 2011 issue
[ Vanity Fair - home page ]

Income Inequality: Too Big to Ignore
By Robert H. Frank
October 16, 2010
People often remember the past with exaggerated fondness. Sometimes, however, important aspects of life really were better in the old days. During the three decades after World War II, for example, incomes in the United States rose rapidly and at about the same rate — almost 3 percent a year — for people at all income levels. America had an economically vibrant middle class. Roads and bridges were well maintained, and impressive new infrastructure was being built. People were optimistic.
By contrast, during the last three decades the economy has grown much more slowly, and our infrastructure has fallen into grave disrepair. Most troubling, all significant income growth has been concentrated at the top of the scale. The share of total income going to the top 1 percent of earners, which stood at 8.9 percent in 1976, rose to 23.5 percent by 2007, but during the same period, the average inflation-adjusted hourly wage declined by more than 7 percent.
Source
New York Times

Top 1% Increased Their Share of Wealth in Financial Crisis (U.S.)
April 30, 2010
By Robert Frank
Many economists and journalists, myself included, assumed inequality would decline during the global financial crisis. The rich tend to be the bi-polars of the economy, reaping the most when times are good and losing the most (on a percentage basis) during busts. (...) New calculations by Edward Wolff, the New York University economist and an expert on U.S. wealth statistics, show that the top 1% actually held onto its share of national wealth in the crisis, and may have even gained a bit.
Source:
The Wealth Report

Enabling Families to Weather Emergencies and Develop:
The Role of Assets

By Signe-Mary McKernan, Caroline Ratcliffe
Posted to Web: July 16, 2008
Abstract
Low-wage jobs can be unstable, leaving families struggling to cope with employment gaps and financial emergencies that can strike without warning. About four in five low-income families are "asset poor," lacking enough liquid savings to live for three months at the federal poverty level without earnings. In this essay, McKernan and Ratcliffe suggest a cluster of policies that would improve financial markets and savings opportunities for low-income families across the life cycle.

Complete report:

Enabling Families to Weather Emergencies and Develop:
The Role of Assets
(PDF - 285K, 30 pages)
"(...) This essay proposes five complementary types of asset policies that enable families to weather emergencies and promote their long-term development:
1. Increase regulation of small loans, preferably with a savings component, to help families with few assets weather an emergency.
2. Match children’s accounts and EITC savings (when deposited into longer-term savings accounts, such as IDAs, or when used to buy U.S. savings bonds) to incentivize savings, help low-income working families get a toehold in the financial world, and increase financial literacy.
3. Allow incentivized savings accounts to be used for vehicle ownership and set up a national grants program to expand ownership of reliable vehicles.
4. Modify the mortgage interest tax deduction and increase oversight of “nonbanks” so low-income working families receive some of the same incentives and protections that higher-income families receive when buying a home.
5. Promote retirement savings through automatic IRAs to provide low-income working families with easy access to a retirement savings mechanism and thus a more secure retirement."

Source:
A New Safety Net for Low-Income Families
[ The Urban Institute - Washington ]


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