The Evolution of Top Incomes in Switzerland over the 20th Century
AbstractWe study the income concentration in the Swiss federation over the course of the 20th century using federal income tax statistics. The results suggest that top incomes in Switzerland evolved over time rather remaining constant across different income shares. Income concentration peaked during the 1940s, with a slight downward trend until the 1990s. Over the last 15 years, top incomes have recovered. In contrast, the evolution of income concentration is much more heterogeneous on the sub-federal level for the 26 cantons because of the federalist constitution, which has a decentralized taxing power. Consequently, top incomes in some cantons have a downward trend; others show a fall and rise of top incomes over the century, as exemplified by the Kuznetsâ€™ hypothesis; some develop rather constantly; and some cantons even produce a striking upward trend.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Center for Research in Economics, Management and the Arts (CREMA) in its series CREMA Working Paper Series with number 2011-06.
Date of creation: Mar 2011
Date of revision:
Income inequality; Top incomes; Taxation;
Other versions of this item:
- Christoph A. Schaltegger & Christoph Gorgas, 2011. "The Evolution of Top Incomes in Switzerland over the 20th Century," Swiss Journal of Economics and Statistics (SJES), Swiss Society of Economics and Statistics (SSES), vol. 147(IV), pages 479-519, December.
- D31 - Microeconomics - - Distribution - - - Personal Income and Wealth Distribution
- H2 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue
- N3 - Economic History - - Labor and Consumers, Demography, Education, Health, Welfare, Income, Wealth, Religion, and Philanthropy
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ACC-2011-04-02 (Accounting & Auditing)
- NEP-ALL-2011-04-02 (All new papers)
- NEP-HIS-2011-04-02 (Business, Economic & Financial History)
- NEP-HME-2011-04-02 (Heterodox Microeconomics)
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