The Evolution of Top Incomes: A Historical and International Perspective

@article{Piketty2006TheEO,
  title={The Evolution of Top Incomes: A Historical and International Perspective},
  author={Thomas Piketty and Emmanuel Saez},
  journal={NBER Working Paper Series},
  year={2006}
}
This paper summarizes the main findings of the recent studies that have constructed top income and wealth shares series over the century for a number of countries using tax statistics. Most countries experience a dramatic drop in top income shares in the first part of the century due to a precipitous drop in large wealth holdings during the wars and depression shocks. Top income shares do not recover in the immediate post war decades. However, over the last 30 years, top income shares have… 
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