WASHINGTON — America’s 99 percent are not just imagining it. The gap between the incomes of the rich and poor in this new Gilded Age is strikingly broad and deep, according to an October report from Congress’ data crunchers.
The study by the Congressional Budget Office, released this week, found that income has become dramatically concentrated, shifting heavily toward the top earners between 1979 and 2007.
And although incomes at all levels have risen some, they’ve skyrocketed for the very wealthiest of earners.
At the other end of the scale, Americans in the bottom fifth of earners saw their incomes increase by less than 20 percent across the nearly three decades. Incomes for those in the middle 60 percent climbed by less than 40 percent over the same span.
Things start to look especially good for the top fifth of earners, who saw their cash flow jump by 65 percent.
But it’s among the top 1 percent where the growth was breathtaking. That contingent saw their incomes spike by 275 percent.