Just today, I overheard someone say that income inequality must not be that bad, because you only need a few $100,000 to be in the 99th percentile (see CNN/Money) — that works out to be about $343k to make the top 1%.

That is factually accurate, but misses the full wealth disparity issue. To see where the big bucks are, you need to look into the top 0.5%, 0.1%, 0.01% and lastly, and lastly, the top 0.001%.

The details of this were delightfully illustrated by Catherine Mulbrandon at TBP conference – PDF presentation here, video here.

Top 1% = $368,238 (20.9% of income)
Top 0.5% = $558,726 (16.8% of income)
Top 0.1% = $1,695,136 (10.3% of income)
Top 0.01% = $9,141,190 (5% of income)


click for larger chart

Category: Economy, Wages & Income

Please use the comments to demonstrate your own ignorance, unfamiliarity with empirical data and lack of respect for scientific knowledge. Be sure to create straw men and argue against things I have neither said nor implied. If you could repeat previously discredited memes or steer the conversation into irrelevant, off topic discussions, it would be appreciated. Lastly, kindly forgo all civility in your discourse . . . you are, after all, anonymous.

107 Responses to “Forget the top 1% — Look at the top 0.1%”

  1. Joe Friday says:

    Frilton Miedman,

    On your comment to the tax cuts for middle and lower classes, your point has validity, but only for the fact that consumer debt is at an all time historic high not seen since 1929

    Actually, that has recently been reversing. Just one example:


    Americans have paid off nearly $1 trillion in debt over the past two years, although the pace of repayment has slowed, according to a regional Federal Reserve report released Monday.

    Total consumer debt was $11.6 trillion as of Sept. 30; down 7.4%, or $922 billion, from the peak reached in the third quarter of 2008, according to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.


  2. Joe Friday says:


    So, you still got nuthin’.

  3. Frilton Miedman says:

    Joe, yes I know, the height of consumer debt was in ’07, but still at extremely high levels, your link displays a ten year chart.

    You need to look at a minimum 40+ year chart to put it into perspective, which is close to terrifying once you factor increasing costs like healthcare, education, and overall inflation.

    Stlouisfed 70 year chart- http://research.stlouisfed.org/fred2/series/CMDEBT

    The recent deleveraging is paltry once you look at the big picture.

  4. Frilton Miedman says:

    Joe Friday Says:
    October 28th, 2011 at 2:06 pm

    So, you still got nuthin’.”

    I wouldn’t say that, afterall, he seeded at least a dozen online forums with his “facts”, which means a Google search for his term makes his “facts” empirical.

  5. AtlasRocked says:

    Still waiting for your SINGLE, ONE SINGLE example of a case where Keynesian stimulus paid back the money it borrowed.


    I did my search guys, I can’t find it. Can you? Please, keep dissembling and documenting you are an advocates of a 100% failed idea.

  6. AtlasRocked says:

    The way you show a policy succeeds is that it pays for itself in the long run, guys. Keynesian stimulus should be easy to prove it works because in many many years since WWII the western democracies have run a deficit. So, all we have to do is show that just after the deficit, the tax revenue caught up with the gov’t and the gov’t spending didn’t have to be cut.

    If we have, say, 20 western democracies of reasonable size, and 65 yeas since WWII, and say they’ve all run a sizable deficit like the US for 38 years. that’s 20 * 38 = 720 nation * years of possibly being able to prove Keynesian stimulus produced enough growth to pay back the deficits, instead the spending having to be cut.

    Since no stories exist at all, then there is no success. Surely the advocates would find one. I found one from 2010 that proclaimed Germany was a success, but their debt is still rising. That’s a FAIL. all the European democracies are in deep debt per capita, most are worse than us by far. That’s zero for 720. 0% success rate. a STRONG zero. And you guys are parading around proclaiming success.

    Doesn’t your reputation as an advocate for good policy mean anything at all? You actually want to be known as someone who runs around proclaiming a documented failed policy is a huge success?