Friday, October 12, 2007

The Rich Keep Getting Richer

This short article from Yahoo ties in well with yesterday’s post concerning the polarizing job market. The middle of the US population is getting squeezed in terms of income and job availability. Someone will have to explain to me why this is a good thing. Also the WSJ has a longer article on the same issue that goes more into depth about the income inequality and its political ramifications.

There is an old expression in business that applies here. "If everyone doesn't make money, then no one makes money."

The richest one percent of Americans earned a postwar record of 21.2 percent of all income in 2005, up from 19 percent a year earlier, reflecting a widening income disparity among different classes in the nation, the Wall Street Journal reported, citing new Internal Revenue Service data.

The data showed that the fortunes of the bottom 50 percent of Americans are worsening, with that group earning 12.8 percent of all income in 2005, down from 13.4 percent the year before, the paper said.

It said that while the IRS data goes back only to 1986, academic research suggests that the last time wealthy Americans had such a high percentage of the national income pie was in the 1920s.

The article cited an interview with President Bush, who attributed income inequality to "skills gaps" among various classes. It said the IRS didn't identify the source of rising income for the affluent, but said a boom on Wall Street has likely played a part.

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