Income Inequality and Immigrants

Steve Antler at Econopundit responds to today's article in the NYT about the widening gap between the very rich and the rest of us. This US

Steve Antler at Econopundit responds to today's article in the NYT about the widening gap between the very rich and the rest of us.

This US "gap between richest and poorest" has to be the most rigged datum in the history of economic thought. The highest percentiles have no income ceiling. The lowest are perpetually augmented by immigrants whose massive upward income mobility remains untabulated because immigrants' starting incomes were earned outside the US.

If Antler is right, then immigrants should make up a disproportionate and growing share of the poor. In fact, that's what the numbers show.

      Share of families headed by non-natives
                        poor families     all families
      1995               19.7%              10.9%
      2003               23.5%              14.5%
      
      share of married couple families headed by non-natives
                        poor families     all families
      1995               29.8%              10.7%
      2003               35.1%              14.3%
      

What this means, for example, is that 35% of poor married couples are headed by immigrants. That's spectacularly high.

Note: Antler also chides me here for inappropriate understanding of blog etiquette.

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