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Top income shares in Portugal over the twentieth century

  • Jordi Guilera Rafecas

    (Universitat de Barcelona)

This paper presents new statistical evidence on the long-term evolution of income inequality in Portugal. Portuguese tax sources have been employed to estimate top income shares from 1936 onwards, with the methodology used to derive such inequality measure being taken from Piketty (2001). The new series show a decrease in top income shares during WWII, followed by a recovery up until the early 1950s. From the mid-fifties to the early eighties there was a huge decline in top income shares. Finally, during the 1990s top income shares once again increased. This pattern is very similar to the experience of other countries: the decline of top income shares during the Golden Age has been observed in most other cases, and their increase during the 1990s seems to put Portugal on a par with the experience of Anglo-Saxon countries.

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Paper provided by Universitat de Barcelona. Espai de Recerca en Economia in its series Working Papers in Economics with number 195.

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Length: 46 pages
Date of creation: 2008
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:bar:bedcje:2008195
Contact details of provider: Postal: Espai de Recerca en Economia, Facultat de Ciències Econòmiques. Tinent Coronel Valenzuela, Num 1-11 08034 Barcelona. Spain.
Web page: http://www.ere.ub.es

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  1. A.B. Atkinson & Andrew Leigh, 2006. "The Distribution of Top Incomes in Australia," CEPR Discussion Papers 514, Centre for Economic Policy Research, Research School of Economics, Australian National University.
  2. Branko Milanovic & Peter H. Lindert & Jeffrey G. Williamson, 2007. "Measuring Ancient Inequality," NBER Working Papers 13550, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Alvaredo, Facundo & Saez, Emmanuel, 2006. "Income and Wealth Concentration in Spain in a Historical and Fiscal Perspective," CEPR Discussion Papers 5836, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  4. Atkinson, A B, 1997. "Bringing Income Distribution in from the Cold," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 107(441), pages 297-321, March.
  5. Emmanuel Saez & Michael R. Veall, 2005. "The Evolution of High Incomes in Northern America: Lessons from Canadian Evidence," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 95(3), pages 831-849, June.
  6. Deininger, Klaus & Squire, Lyn, 1996. "A New Data Set Measuring Income Inequality," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 10(3), pages 565-91, September.
  7. Fabien Dell, 2005. "Top Incomes in Germany and Switzerland Over the Twentieth Century," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 3(2-3), pages 412-421, 04/05.
  8. Anthony B. Atkinson & Wiemer Salverda, 2005. "Top Incomes In The Netherlands And The United Kingdom Over The 20th Century," Journal of the European Economic Association, MIT Press, vol. 3(4), pages 883-913, 06.
  9. A. B. Atkinson & Andrew Leigh, 2005. "The Distribution of Top Incomes in New Zealand," CEPR Discussion Papers 503, Centre for Economic Policy Research, Research School of Economics, Australian National University.
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