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Measuring UK top incomes

Advani, Arun, Summers, Andrew ORCID: 0000-0002-4978-7743 and Tarrant, Hannah (2021) Measuring UK top incomes. CAGE Working Paper (490). University of Warwick, Warwick, UK.

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We compare two approaches to measuring UK top income shares—the share of income going to particular subgroups, such as the top 1%. We set out four criteria that an ideal top share series should satisfy: (i) comparability between numerator and denominator; (ii) comparability over time; (iii) international comparability; and (iv) practical sustainability. Our preferred approach meets three of these; by contrast the approach currently used to produce UK fiscal income series meets none of them. Changing to our preferred approach matters quantitatively: the share of income going to the top 1% is 2 percentage points higher, but rising more slowly, than under the alternative.

Item Type: Monograph (Working Paper)
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2021 The Authors
Divisions: Law
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HC Economic History and Conditions
H Social Sciences > HB Economic Theory
JEL classification: D - Microeconomics > D3 - Distribution > D31 - Personal Income, Wealth, and Their Distributions
D - Microeconomics > D6 - Welfare Economics > D63 - Equity, Justice, Inequality, and Other Normative Criteria and Measurement
E - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics > E0 - General > E01 - Measurement and Data on National Income and Product Accounts and Wealth
H - Public Economics > H2 - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue > H20 - General
Date Deposited: 04 Feb 2022 11:57
Last Modified: 31 May 2024 11:06

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