Saturday 29 December 2012

Income Distribution Under Conservatives and Labour

Here's a very interesting graph:

This shows the distribution of income under the 1979-97 Conservative government, and the 1997-2010 Labour government. Something tells me the present bunch will be edging toward the former rather than the latter. I guess this is what the Liberal Democrats mean when they talk about 'building a fairer Britain'.

Graph source is page 30 of this Joseph Rowntree/Institute for Fiscal Studies report here.

(H/T @BenCooper86)


Owen Tudor, TUC said...

If the poorest quintile's real income increases by the same percentage as the richest quintile, that actually means that inequality is increasing, and that the richest quintile have snaffled more of the growth in that period than the poorest (because 1.7% of £100,000 a year is rather more than 1.7% of £10,000 a year - indeed it's an order of magnitude greater.) New Labour's most realistic claim is that they held down the rate at which inequality was growing globally, and indeed the OECD suggests that the UK's Gini coefficient was falling from 1997-2005 but rose back up thereafter. And certainly, your graphs show - as we knew already - that inequality soared under Thatcher with the highest quintile getting 30 times more than the lowest quintile, although it reduced slightly after transfers under Major.) If Cameron wins the next election, the 2010-2020 picture will probably not be as extreme as under Thatcher, but worse than under Blair/Brown.

Gary Elsby said...

My first question was, % of what?

Working class pay boomed under Thatcher.

Minimum wage pays out under Blair but the question has to be put, up or down?

Employment nad pay crashed for half of Blair/Brown rule.

Phil said...

I agree with what you say, Owen.

Gary, it might be helpful if you read the comment above.

Gary Elsby said...

I did glance at it but came to conclusion that Owen was writing of the obvious.
As I said, % of what?

The rest i stand by as it is perfectly true.

The rich will always prosper unde growth and it is stretching it to ask them not to.

The minimum wage was always a flasehood (apart from the temporary blip) and so is the reduction of the working class hourly week (which increases hourly pay).

Smoke and mirrors.

Under Thatcher, the rich got richer, sure, but the working classes raked it in.

Phil said...

The charts says what the percentages are - of real income growth. That is, growth adjusting for inflation. I don't know how more explicit it can be, really.

As the charts shows, working class people didn't "rake it in" compared with the top tier of the population. Evidence has to be a bit more robust than your anecdotes about Mr Smith across the road.