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2013 Update on the U.S. Earnings, Income, and Wealth Distributional Facts: A View from Macroeconomics

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  • Rios-Rull, Jose-Victor

    (Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis)

  • Kuhn, Moritz

    (University of Bonn)

Abstract

This article is largely a description of the earnings, income, and wealth distributions in the United States in 2013 as measured by the Survey of Consumer Finances (SCF). We describe facts that lie at the joint distribution of the three variables. We look at inequality in relation to age, education, employer status, and marital status. We discuss the evolution of our results over the past 25 years (1989 - 2013), emphasizing the role played by the Great Recession. We pay special attention to the degree of income and wealth concentration at the top and discuss what the use of the SCF data can contribute to the ongoing debate on this topic. Finally, we look at which income sources and asset classes contribute most to income and wealth concentration.

Suggested Citation

  • Rios-Rull, Jose-Victor & Kuhn, Moritz, 2016. "2013 Update on the U.S. Earnings, Income, and Wealth Distributional Facts: A View from Macroeconomics," Quarterly Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, issue April, pages 1-75.
  • Handle: RePEc:fip:fedmqr:00002
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    File URL: https://www.minneapolisfed.org/research/qr/qr3711.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Edward Wolff & Maury Gittleman, 2014. "Inheritances and the distribution of wealth or whatever happened to the great inheritance boom?," The Journal of Economic Inequality, Springer;Society for the Study of Economic Inequality, vol. 12(4), pages 439-468, December.
    2. Mariacristina De Nardi & Eric French & John B. Jones, 2010. "Why Do the Elderly Save? The Role of Medical Expenses," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 118(1), pages 39-75, February.
    3. Slesnick, Daniel T, 1992. "Aggregate Consumption and Saving in the Postwar United States," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 74(4), pages 585-597, November.
    4. Saez, Emmanuel & Zucman, Gabriel, 2014. "Wealth Inequality in the United States since 1913: Evidence from Capitalized Income Tax Data," CEPR Discussion Papers 10227, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    5. John Ameriks & Joseph S. Briggs & Andrew Caplin & Matthew D. Shapiro & Christopher Tonetti, 2015. "Long-Term-Care Utility and Late-in-Life Saving," NBER Working Papers 20973, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. Javier Díaz-Giménez & Andrew Glover & José-Víctor Ríos-Rull, 2011. "Facts on the distributions of earnings, income, and wealth in the United States: 2007 update," Quarterly Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
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    Cited by:

    1. Krueger, D. & Mitman, K. & Perri, F., 2016. "Macroeconomics and Household Heterogeneity," Handbook of Macroeconomics, Elsevier.
    2. Per Krusell & Jonna Olsson & Timo Boppart, 2017. "Labor Supply in the Future: Who Will Work?," 2017 Meeting Papers 157, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    3. Mariacristina De Nardi & Giulio Fella & Gonzalo Paz Pardo, 2016. "The Implications of Richer Earnings Dynamics for Consumption and Wealth," NBER Working Papers 21917, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    4. repec:red:issued:16-340 is not listed on IDEAS
    5. Giovanni Gallipoli & Brant Abbott, 2017. ""Permanent Income" Inequality," 2017 Meeting Papers 1033, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    6. Mariacristina De Nardi & Giulio Fella, 2017. "Saving and Wealth Inequality," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 26, pages 280-300, October.
    7. Berman, Yonatan & Shapira, Yoash, 2017. "Revisiting r>g—The asymptotic dynamics of wealth inequality," Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications, Elsevier, vol. 467(C), pages 562-572.
    8. Aaron Hedlund, 2015. "Failure to Launch: Housing, Debt Overhang, and the Inflation Option During the Great Recession," Working Papers 1515, Department of Economics, University of Missouri.

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