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The United States has some of the highest levels of income and wealth inequality in the world. U.S. Federal Reserve data shows that the wealthiest 10% of Americans control $93.8 trillion, more than double the $40.3 trillion in the hands of the remaining 90% of Americans.

The income and wealth divide only appears to be growing wider. A January 2020 report published by the Pew Research Center found that over the last four decades, income growth for the top 5% of families by earnings has far outpaced income growth for families in lower income strata.

Based on the Gini coefficient, a measure of income inequality based on the distribution of income across a population, income inequality varies considerably across the United States. The Gini coefficient is a scale from 0 to 1 -- 0 representing perfect equality and 1 representing the highest possible level of inequality. Nationwide, the Gini coefficient stands at 0.481.

The Gini coefficient in New York is 0.515 -- higher than the national average and highest among all 50 states.

Across the state, the average income among the top 20% of households by earnings stands at $291,906. The cohort accounts for 54.4% of all income earned in New York. Meanwhile, the average income among the bottom 20% of households by earnings is just $13,372, accounting for 2.5% of all earnings statewide.

Causes behind rising inequality are complex and varied. A report published by the National Bureau of Economic Research ties the rising disparity to a range of economic factors, including globalization, technological advancement, a stagnant minimum wage, and the decline of labor unions.

All data in this story, including the Gini coefficient, average household income by quintile, and share of aggregate household income by quintile are from the U.S. Census Bureau's 2019 American Community Survey.

 

RankStateGini coefficientAvg. income of top earning 20% of households ($)Avg. income of lowest earning 20% of households ($)
1New York0.515291,90613,372
2Connecticut0.502306,15316,037
3Louisiana0.498190,0389,426
4Mississippi0.490169,3189,715
5California0.487295,36916,981
6Florida0.481217,45614,026
7Massachusetts0.480299,18816,450
8Illinois0.480245,17314,667
9Georgia0.479222,39913,668
10New Jersey0.478305,19018,249
11New Mexico0.477181,94010,976
12Kentucky0.476183,54911,367
13Texas0.475228,92414,556
14Arkansas0.475173,94111,555
15Tennessee0.475199,45613,144
16South Carolina0.475198,95112,334
17Pennsylvania0.475223,49914,295
18North Carolina0.474204,12913,301
19Alabama0.474180,46910,916
20Oklahoma0.474192,06112,507
21Nevada0.471220,20814,425
22Virginia0.469265,17117,138
23Ohio0.465199,07413,601
24West Virginia0.464163,24010,649
25Michigan0.463201,67613,976
26Missouri0.463194,18513,294
27Rhode Island0.463228,95114,829
28Montana0.460191,81913,899
29Arizona0.459209,81914,754
30Indiana0.458193,27913,987
31Washington0.458262,11818,576
32Maryland0.456280,11518,902
33North Dakota0.456209,98515,064
34Colorado0.455255,11418,417
35Delaware0.451224,89415,945
36Kansas0.450200,93215,090
37Oregon0.450215,02615,597
38Maine0.449190,60614,674
39Vermont0.447200,81615,054
40Minnesota0.443233,94918,156
41Iowa0.442192,97915,270
42New Hampshire0.441241,89119,002
43Nebraska0.440197,99715,965
44Hawaii0.440252,49218,445
45Wisconsin0.439197,97716,034
46Alaska0.438234,22118,408
47South Dakota0.436184,71415,519
48Wyoming0.435196,02915,528
49Idaho0.434188,03616,199
50Utah0.427227,02220,124

 

This article originally ran on 247wallst.com.

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