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Missing incomes in the UK: evidence and policy implications

Advani, Arun, Ooms, Tahnee and Summers, Andrew ORCID: 0000-0002-4978-7743 (2021) Missing incomes in the UK: evidence and policy implications. CAGE Working Paper (543). University of Warwick, Warwick, UK.

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Policymakers tend to ‘treasure what is measured’ and overlook phenomena that are not. In an era of increased reliance on administrative data, existing policies also often determine what is measured in the first place. We analyse this two-way interaction between measurement and policy in the context of the investment incomes and capital gains that are missing from the UK’s official income statistics. We show that these ‘missing incomes’ change the picture of economic inequality over the past decade, revealing rising top income shares during the period of austerity. The underestimation of these forms of income in official statistics has diverted attention from tax policies that disproportionately benefit the wealthiest. We urge a renewed focus on how policy affects and is affected by measurement.

Item Type: Monograph (Working Paper)
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2021 The Authors
Divisions: Law
International Inequalities Institute
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HC Economic History and Conditions
H Social Sciences > HB Economic Theory
H Social Sciences > HJ Public Finance
Date Deposited: 04 Feb 2022 11:54
Last Modified: 15 Sep 2023 23:55

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