Increasingly Unequal States of America: Income Inequality by State

Posted on March 31, 2014

The Increasingly Unequal States of America
Income Inequality by State, 1917 to 2011

Executive summary
Economic inequality is, at long last, commanding attention from policymakers, the media, and everyday citizens. There is growing recognition that we need an inclusive economy that works for everyone—not just for those at the top.

While there are plentiful data examining the fortunes of the top 1 percent at the national level, this report examines how the top 1 percent in each state have fared over 1917–2011, with an emphasis on trends over 1928–2011 (data for additional percentiles spanning 1917–2011 are available at In so doing, this analysis finds that all 50 states have experienced widening income inequality in recent decades.

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