A look at pay at the top, the bottom, and in between

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Spotlight on Statistics, May 2015

Policymakers and the public have given much attention to economic inequality in the past few years. In general terms, inequality refers to the differences between people with the highest levels of wealth, income, or earnings and those with the lowest levels. How big are these differences? Have they grown over time? What other ways do these groups differ besides how much money they earn?

This Spotlight on Statistics looks at measures of earnings and wages. The Spotlight examines how these measures have changed over time and how they differ within a geographic area, industry, or occupation. The Spotlight also looks at how participation in employee benefit plans differs across wage categories. Finally, the Spotlight looks at how people in different income or earnings categories spend their time and their money.