Income and wealth inequality have been rising in the past three decades. Surprisingly, inequality has been largely ignored in the literature and practice of monetary policy. However, due to the crisis, this question has been gaining more attention.
We analyse the link between income distribution and the current account for the period 1972-2007. We find that rising (top-end) personal inequality leads to a decrease of the current account, ceteris paribus.
The inequality of income and wealth is one of the defining issues of our time, in terms of both its social and macroeconomic implications. In this article, I focus on the macroeconomic implications of inequality. In particular, it is possible to identify four themes on which there seems to be growing consensus among many economists especially in the various heterodox traditions, but also increasingly in the mainstream of the economics profession:
It is highly fitting to have a panel devoted to ‘teaching economics’ in Paris. No less than 15 years ago, in 2000, in downtown Paris, a group of students from the École Normale Supérieure, one of France’s élite schools, wrote a petition asking economics teaching to be devoted to the study of real-world problems, with an instrumental use of mathematics rather than to the description of imaginary worlds based on meaningless formalizations.
This paper discusses the main issues about increasing inequality, whether it matters and its impact on economic activity and growth. It starts by briefly considering the empirical evidence of the share of income going to the top one percent since 1945 in the advanced countries. It then considers whether this represents an increase in the productivity of the top one percent or merely an extraction of economic rent.
There is widespread and growing concern about the availability of good jobs in the U.S. economy. Inequality has been growing for thirty years and is now at levels not seen since the 1920s. Stable and remunerative employment has become harder for U.S. workers to find.
Using data on industrial air pollution exposure in the United States, we compute three measures of environmental inequality: the Gini coefficient of exposure, the ratio of median exposure of minorities to that of non-Hispanic whites, and the ratio of median exposure of poor households to that of nonpoor households.
This paper is based on a social accounting matrix (SAM) which incorporates the size distribution of income based on data from the BEA national accounts, the widely discussed 2012 CBO distribution study, and BLS consumer surveys.