Monday, September 24, 2007

Income Distribution -- A Practical Example

It is interesting to me that in Canada (where I used to live) I would be easily in the top 5% of income earners but that in the US (where I currently live) I am not even close.

An income of at least $89,000 was needed to be in the top five per cent of earners in 2004, Statistics Canada said Monday.

This "five per cent club" earned 25 per cent of the income Canadians declared in 2004 — up from 21 per cent in 1992. They paid 36 per cent of the personal taxes collected in 2004.

The country's 1.2 million high-income earners — those among the top five per cent — were predominantly male (75 per cent), aged 45 to 64 (54 per cent) and married (78 per cent), Statistics Canada said.

Almost half (46 per cent) of the top five per cent of tax filers lived in Ontario. About 18 per cent are in Quebec, followed by Alberta (15 per cent) and British Columbia (13 per cent).

In the U.S., an income of at least $165,000 was the requirement to join the "five per cent club."

Per Capita GDP is significantly higher in the US than in Canada (44K to 36K more or less) but that doesn't completely explain the difference. I do not think that anyone would claim that Canada is anything other than a fully developed industrialized nation either, so it isn't a matter of just being a country full of poor folks.

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