IDEAS home Printed from https://ideas.repec.org/a/oup/wbecrv/v19y2005i1p1-20.html
   My bibliography  Save this article

Top Indian Incomes, 1922-2000

Author

Listed:
  • Abhijit Banerjee
  • Thomas Piketty

Abstract

This article presents data on the evolution of top incomes and wages for 1922--2000 in India using individual tax return data. The data show that the shares of the top 0.01 percent, 0.1 percent, and 1 percent in total income shrank substantially from the 1950s to the early to mid-1980s but then rose again, so that today these shares are only slightly below what they were in the 1920s and 1930s. This U-shaped pattern is broadly consistent with the evolution of economic policy in India: From the 1950s to the early to mid-1980s was a period of "socialist" policies in India, whereas the subsequent period, starting with the rise of Rajiv Gandhi, saw a gradual shift toward more probusiness policies. Although the initial share of the top income group was small, the fact that the rich were getting richer had a nontrivial impact on the overall income distribution. Although the impact is not large enough to fully explain the gap observed during the 1990s between average consumption growth shown in National Sample Survey--based data and the national accounts--based data, it is sufficiently large to explain a nonnegligible part of it (20--40 percent). Copyright 2005, Oxford University Press.

Suggested Citation

  • Abhijit Banerjee & Thomas Piketty, 2005. "Top Indian Incomes, 1922-2000," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 19(1), pages 1-20.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:wbecrv:v:19:y:2005:i:1:p:1-20
    as

    Download full text from publisher

    To our knowledge, this item is not available for download. To find whether it is available, there are three options:
    1. Check below whether another version of this item is available online.
    2. Check on the provider's web page whether it is in fact available.
    3. Perform a search for a similarly titled item that would be available.

    Other versions of this item:

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • J12 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Marriage; Marital Dissolution; Family Structure

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:oup:wbecrv:v:19:y:2005:i:1:p:1-20. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Oxford University Press) or (Christopher F. Baum). General contact details of provider: http://edirc.repec.org/data/wrldbus.html .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.