Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

US income distribution winners and losers

29.02.2012
Rich households found to be the real beneficiaries of economic prosperity
People all over the world have spent almost six months in front of universities, public parks, banks, and even Wall Street to publicly protest their dissatisfaction with economic inequality. But how much disparity really exists between the rich and poor in the United States? According to a new study, it might be more than you would think.

A recent study published in the Review of Radical Political Economics (published by SAGE), analyzed surveys of US households from the late 1990's and early 2000's. The author looked at differences among quintiles (or fifths of the U.S. population according to gross income) and found that when the U.S. economy prospers, there is an uphill flow of income to households in the upper quintiles while the majority of households in middle and lower income quintiles do not see an increase in income at all. This of course affects US households when the economy slows down.

According to the author, the data suggests that "those in the bottom…appear to be stuck there, and in some cases even sliding further into the depths of poverty, further negating the optimistic outcomes postulated by conventional economic thinking."

The author analyzed data from surveys of over 60,000 U.S. households that were taken periodically from 1996 to 2003. He notes that throughout these years, U.S. households had to adjust to some substantial changes in the economy from times of surplus and low unemployment rates to times when the economy slowed down substantially. Interestingly, when the economy of the U.S. prospered in the 1990s, only the incomes of richer households appeared to reflect this growth.
"It can be argued that households in the upper portion of the income distribution are better positioned, or even favored, to reap the benefits from growth, further widening the income gap between rich and poor," wrote the author.

Conversely, the author wrote that even in times of economic prosperity, poorer classes have limited access to resources that would improve their position. For example, while technological advances spur economic growth, they do not benefit all households equally.

"The data imply that the U.S. economy is not one of mobility and opportunity," wrote the author. "Richer households are getting richer, the poorer households are staying poor, and those middle-income households continue to move about chasing the elusive American dream."

The article entitled "Who are the Winners and the Losers? Transitions in the U.S. Household Income Distribution" from the Review of Radical Political Economics is available free for a limited time at: http://rrp.sagepub.com/content/43/4/467.full.pdf+html
Review of Radical Political Economics (RRPE), peer-reviewed and published quarterly, has been a leading outlet for innovative research in non-orthodox economics for more than forty years. RRPE promotes critical inquiry into all areas of economic, social, and political reality with articles covering all areas of political economy including, but not confined to, Marxian economics, post-Keynesian economics, Sraffian economics, feminist economics, and radical institutional economics.

SAGE is a leading international publisher of journals, books, and electronic media for academic, educational, and professional markets. Since 1965, SAGE has helped inform and educate a global community of scholars, practitioners, researchers, and students spanning a wide range of subject areas including business, humanities, social sciences, and science, technology, and medicine. An independent company, SAGE has principal offices in Los Angeles, London, New Delhi, Singapore and Washington DC. http://www.sagepublications.com

Ashley Loar | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.sagepub.com

More articles from Business and Finance:

nachricht Mathematical confirmation: Rewiring financial networks reduces systemic risk
22.06.2017 | International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA)

nachricht Frugal Innovations: when less is more
19.04.2017 | Fraunhofer-Institut für Arbeitswirtschaft und Organisation IAO

All articles from Business and Finance >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Neutron star merger directly observed for the first time

University of Maryland researchers contribute to historic detection of gravitational waves and light created by event

On August 17, 2017, at 12:41:04 UTC, scientists made the first direct observation of a merger between two neutron stars--the dense, collapsed cores that remain...

Im Focus: Breaking: the first light from two neutron stars merging

Seven new papers describe the first-ever detection of light from a gravitational wave source. The event, caused by two neutron stars colliding and merging together, was dubbed GW170817 because it sent ripples through space-time that reached Earth on 2017 August 17. Around the world, hundreds of excited astronomers mobilized quickly and were able to observe the event using numerous telescopes, providing a wealth of new data.

Previous detections of gravitational waves have all involved the merger of two black holes, a feat that won the 2017 Nobel Prize in Physics earlier this month....

Im Focus: Smart sensors for efficient processes

Material defects in end products can quickly result in failures in many areas of industry, and have a massive impact on the safe use of their products. This is why, in the field of quality assurance, intelligent, nondestructive sensor systems play a key role. They allow testing components and parts in a rapid and cost-efficient manner without destroying the actual product or changing its surface. Experts from the Fraunhofer IZFP in Saarbrücken will be presenting two exhibits at the Blechexpo in Stuttgart from 7–10 November 2017 that allow fast, reliable, and automated characterization of materials and detection of defects (Hall 5, Booth 5306).

When quality testing uses time-consuming destructive test methods, it can result in enormous costs due to damaging or destroying the products. And given that...

Im Focus: Cold molecules on collision course

Using a new cooling technique MPQ scientists succeed at observing collisions in a dense beam of cold and slow dipolar molecules.

How do chemical reactions proceed at extremely low temperatures? The answer requires the investigation of molecular samples that are cold, dense, and slow at...

Im Focus: Shrinking the proton again!

Scientists from the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics, using high precision laser spectroscopy of atomic hydrogen, confirm the surprisingly small value of the proton radius determined from muonic hydrogen.

It was one of the breakthroughs of the year 2010: Laser spectroscopy of muonic hydrogen resulted in a value for the proton charge radius that was significantly...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

ASEAN Member States discuss the future role of renewable energy

17.10.2017 | Event News

World Health Summit 2017: International experts set the course for the future of Global Health

10.10.2017 | Event News

Climate Engineering Conference 2017 Opens in Berlin

10.10.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Terahertz spectroscopy goes nano

20.10.2017 | Information Technology

Strange but true: Turning a material upside down can sometimes make it softer

20.10.2017 | Materials Sciences

NRL clarifies valley polarization for electronic and optoelectronic technologies

20.10.2017 | Interdisciplinary Research

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>