Income Inequality Is the Enemy of Economic Growth: Robert Reich | Daily Ticker – Yahoo Finance

Category: News

Just hours after Yale professor Robert Shiller won the Nobel prize for economics Monday he told the Associated Press: “The most important problem that we are facing today…is rising inequality in the United States and elsewhere in the world.”

Former U.S. Labor Secretary Robert Reich could not agree more.

“Of all the advanced economies, we are the most unequal and we are surging forward greater inequality at the fastest rate,” Reich tells The Daily Ticker. “The 400 richest Americans own more wealth than the bottom 150 million Americans put together.”

According to “Inequality for All,” a new film that Reich narrates, the wealth gap in the U.S. is as wide as it was in 1928, just before the Great Depression. The richest 1% of Americans own more than 35% of the country’s wealth, while the bottom 50% control just 2.5%.

At first glance that sounds like good news for the wealthy in this country, but Reich disagrees. “The rich would do better with a smaller share of a rapidly growing economy because [then] the middle class has more purchasing power and could help it grow,” he says.
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