New data from a renowned economist show what most people in the country have intuitively understood for months: When the recession technically came to an end, it didn’t really feel that way unless you were wealthy enough to weather it to begin with.
In his updated report “Striking it Richer,” Emmanuel Saez of UC Berekely found that the top one percent in the U.S. hoovered up 93 percent of the income gains in 2010. To break that down, the top one percent enjoyed, on average, income gains of over $100,000 a year from 2009-2010. Everyone else saw their incomes rise, on average, about $80.
High-income Americans also lost a greater share of their income because of the great recession than median Americans. But like very wealthy Jedi masters they’ve come back more powerful than they were before.
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Brian Beutler is TPM's senior congressional reporter. Since 2009, he's led coverage of health care reform, Wall Street reform, taxes, the GOP budget, the government shutdown fight, and the debt limit fight. He can be reached at email@example.com.