Top Indian Incomes, 1956-2000
AbstractThis Paper presents data on the evolution of top incomes and wages from 1956 to 2000 in India using individual tax returns data. Our data shows that the shares of the top 0.01%, the top 0.1% and the top 1% in total income shrank very substantially until the early-to-mid 1980s, but then went back up again, so that today these shares are only slightly below what they were in 1956. We argue that this U-shaped pattern is broadly consistent with the evolution of economic policy in India - the period from 1956 to the early-to-mid 1980s was also the period of ‘socialist’ policies in India, while the subsequent period, starting with the rise of Rajiv Gandhi, saw a gradual shift towards more pro-business policies. Although the initial share of this group was small, the fact that the rich were getting richer had a non-trivial impact on the overall income distribution. In particular, its impact is not large enough to fully explain the gap between average consumption growth in survey-based NSS data and the National accounts-based NAS data, but is sufficiently large to explain a non-negligible part of it (between 20% and 40%).
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.
Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers in its series CEPR Discussion Papers with number 4137.
Date of creation: Dec 2002
Date of revision:
Contact details of provider:
Postal: Centre for Economic Policy Research, 77 Bastwick Street, London EC1V 3PZ.
Phone: 44 - 20 - 7183 8801
Fax: 44 - 20 - 7183 8820
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- D63 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Equity, Justice, Inequality, and Other Normative Criteria and Measurement
- N34 - Economic History - - Labor and Consumers, Demography, Education, Health, Welfare, Income, Wealth, Religion, and Philanthropy - - - Europe: 1913-
You can help add them by filling out this form.
CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
- Basu, Kaushik, 2005.
"Globalization, Poverty and Inequality: What Is the Relationship? What Can Be Done?,"
Working Paper Series
RP2005/32, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
- Basu, Kaushik, 2006. "Globalization, poverty, and inequality: What is the relationship? What can be done?," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 34(8), pages 1361-1373, August.
- Kaushik Basu, 2010. "Globalization, Poverty and Inequality: What Is the Relationship? What Can Be Done?," Working Papers id:3234, eSocialSciences.
- Basu, Kaushik, 2005. "Globalization, Poverty and Inequality: What Is the Relationship? What Can Be Done?," Working Papers 05-13, Cornell University, Center for Analytic Economics.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: ().
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.