The Rise of the Super-Rich: Power Resources, Taxes, Financial Markets, and the Dynamics of the Top 1 Percent, 1949 to 2008

Source: Thomas W. Volscho and Nathan J. Kelly, American Sociological Review, Vol. 77 no. 5, October 2012
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From the abstract:
The income share of the super-rich in the United States has grown rapidly since the early 1980s after a period of postwar stability. What factors drove this change? In this study, we investigate the institutional, policy, and economic shifts that may explain rising income concentration. We use single-equation error correction models to estimate the long- and short-run effects of politics, policy, and economic factors on pretax top income shares between 1949 and 2008. We find that the rise of the super-rich is the result of rightward-shifts in Congress, the decline of labor unions, lower tax rates on high incomes, increased trade openness, and asset bubbles in stock and real estate markets.

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