Top one percent took in 95 percent of income gains during Obama’s recovery

Patrick Howley Political Reporter
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The nation’s top one percent of income-earners took in 95 percent of the income gains since the Great Recession.

Despite President Obama’s highly-touted stimulus and other economic policies advertised as economic restorations, the administration has emboldened the very target of Obama’s most recent State of the Union speech: inequality.

“However, the gains were very uneven. Top 1% incomes grew by 31.4% while bottom 99% incomes grew only by 0.4% from 2009 to 2012. Hence, the top 1% captured 95% of the income gains in the first three years of the recovery,” according to a September 3, 2013 study by University of California-Berkeley’s Emmanuel Saez, which was cited in passing Monday by the New York Times.

“From 2009 to 2010, top 1% grew fast and then stagnated from 2010 to 2011. Bottom 99% stagnated both from 2009 to 2010 and from 2010 to 2011. In 2012, top 1% incomes increased sharply by 19.6% while bottom 99% incomes grew only by 1.0%. In sum, top 1% incomes are close to full recovery while bottom 99% incomes have hardly started to recover,” Saez wrote, using projected estimates for his 2012 numbers.

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