Income Inequality Increasing Faster in CT Than US; Among Largest Disparities in Nation

In Connecticut, to earn a place in the top one percent would require making $700,800, the highest threshold in the nation.  The average annual income of the top one percent is also among the highest in the nation at $2,522,806.  That is 37 times the annual income of the bottom 99 percent, which is $67, 742, according to data analyzed by the Economic Policy Institute. The data reveal that the top one percent take home 27.3 percent of all the income in Connecticut, and that the share of income by the top one percent has increased at a faster rate in Connecticut in recent years than in the nation as a whole.

Connecticut ranks #3 of the 50 states in income inequality, based on the ratio of top one percent to bottom 99 percent income.  (New York’s top one percent makes 44 times the bottom 99 percent; Florida 39 times; Connecticut 37 times)  The Bridgeport-Stamford-Norwalk metro area is the most unequal metro area in Connecticut, the data indicate. The top 1 percent make 62.2 times more than the bottom 99 percent.

Overall in the Northeast, the top 1 percent take home 24.7 percent of all the income in the Northeast.  The average annual income of the top one percent is $1,777,756 compared with $54,662 for “everyone else,” the other 99 percent.  Nationwide, the top one percent take home an annual income of $1,316,985 versus $50,107 for the other 99 percent.   The most unequal metro area in the U.S. is Jackson, WY, where the top one percent make 132 times the rest of the population.

The data is based on an Economic Policy Institute report published this summer. EPI is an independent, nonprofit think tank based in Washington, D.C. that researches the impact of economic trends and policies on working people in the United States.

The report used 2015 data, the most recent available, finding that the top 1 percent of families in the U.S. earned, on average, 26.3 times as much income as the bottom 99 percent—an increase from 2013, when they earned 25.3 times as much.

Eight states plus the District of Columbia had gaps wider than the national gap. In the most unequal—New York, Florida, and Connecticut—the top 1 percent earned average incomes more than 35 times those of the bottom 99 percent.

The report found that income inequality has risen in every state since the 1970s and, in most states, it has grown in the post–Great Recession era. From 2009 to 2015, the incomes of the top 1 percent grew faster than the incomes of the bottom 99 percent in 43 states and the District of Columbia.

(Infographics:  Economic Policy Institute;