From 1960 to 2019, the after-tax-and-transfer share of national income going to the top 1% rose by 6pp according to PSZ but only 1pp according to AS. Part of the difference between the two is related to their measurement of pre-tax income shares. PSZ find the top 1% share of pre-tax income rose by 6 percentage points (from 13% to 19%) and AS estimate the increase to be 4pp (from 10% to 14%). But different estimates of pre-tax income shares only explain 2 of the 5pp discrepancy. The remaining 3-point gap results from different estimates of the effects of tax and transfer policies. The preponderance of evidence suggests that income inequality has increased, both in the U.S. and in other countries. Evidence also shows U.S. inequality increasing in other measures, such as health, mortality, and wealth. It is hard to see why inequality on other dimensions would have increased, in some cases substantially, if the distribution of income had not changed.
- Date Posted:
- December 15, 2023
The US produces more crude oil than any other country by a significant margin, and when looking at total petroleum products (including hydrocarbon gas liquids like propane and biofuels like ethanol) the US makes more than Saudi Arabia and Russia combined. As of September, American crude oil production has set a new record high, US natural gas production has continued setting new record highs and is now up 7% from its 2019 peaks. In other words, the US is now producing more energy than ever before, and that growing surplus is being sent abroad—net US energy exports have reached $70B over the last 12 months despite falling oil and gas prices. In fact, US supply growth has been a large factor behind those falling prices in a year where OPEC+ producers have seen significant ongoing production cutbacks.