Branko Milanovic

Branko Milanovic


1) Income inequality; 2) Politics; 3) History; 4) Soccer. Author of "Global inequality" and "Capitalism, Alone" (2019). Stone Center, CUNY; LSE, London

148767 followers  •  1097 follow  •    •   https://stonecenter.gc.cuny.edu/people/milanovic-branko/

My yesterday' review of an excellent new book: Western money and Eastern promises

The evolution of US and China's inequality (in after-tax income) from 1975 to 2021. China probably became more unequal than the US around the turn of the century. @lisdata  give somewhat lower inequality for China, but still above the US level. (official surveys in both cases)

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Great post, super rich in historical & economic detail. Chartbook #166 : 1922/2022 - The centenary of Mussolini's "March on Rome" and the dilemmas of the liberal expert class. , by @adam_tooze 

Rocking your priors. Any increase in real income in Norway, but among the poorest 6%, *adds* to global inequality. For the US, it is any increase in income except for the bottom 16%. But, in rural India, increase of income of all, except the top 1%, *reduces* global inequality.

Much better to talk than to war. Finally some common sense.

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"Economists must leave to Adam Smith alone the glory of the Quarto, must pluck the day, fling pamphlets into the wind, write always sub specie temporis, and achieve immortality by accident, if at all." (J M Keynes, Essays on Persuasion; essay on Alfred Marshall, p. 174)

Branko Milanovic: ‘The forces of self-interest and technology cannot be undone’

After ~40% of the games played, the mean goal difference is 1.5, the highest such difference since 06. The average of the previous cups 1.4 and 1.3. Since the average number of goals per game is lower than in the past 2 cups, seems the gap btw teams has increased. But too early.

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Watching Europeans govt's argue in favor of price controls while their own representatives have spent half-a-century voting for IMF programs that would abolish price controls anywhere else is...well, a spectacle.

Many policies that 20y ago were thought great (and the World Bank promoted them all) are now seen as failures: 1. Complex financial instruments 2. Student loans 3. Private pensions 4. Fast privatization 5. Privatization of infrastructure & water 6. Cutting basic food subsidies

There are totally absurd claims (repeated by Putin today) about "conservative values" that ostensibly exist in Russia. Even the most cursory look at numbers shows it is a total nonsense. Compared to (eg) France, divorce, suicide, murder, abortion are 2-3 times greater in Russia.

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Global income distribution has radically changed in the past 30 years. It now looks almost like a distribution of a single country which is normally bell-shaped (with income in logs on the x-axis). Leaving these niceties aside, it is clear that a global median class has emerged.

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People have died for many reasons: nations, religions and ideologies. But it is indeed a new thing to die for Dow Jones. It is fully post-modern. To die for rich people's *perceptions* about the future summarized in one abstract number.

"Poland's leader says if 'no' side wins, Greece must leave eurozone". This from PM of a country which in 1991 got 60% of its debt forgiven.

Most extraordinary change in only 30 years, probably the greatest over such a short period ever. The shape of the global income distribution has totally changed: notice the new thickness in the middle, btw $PPP3k and $PPP10k where in 1988 there were very few people.

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In the "nerding out" part: the end of the elephant. Between 2008 and 2018, incomes of the globally poor have increased in percentage terms much more than the incomes of the globally rich. The global Gini has gone down.

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Probably less than 1% of people in the world own shares, but 2/3 of Nobel Prize winners in econ are about stock market behavior.

Chile is such an extravagant case of inequality that even back-of-the-envelope calculations suffice. Current measures proposed by the govt to diffuse social tensions are estimated to cost 0.4% of GDP. Chilean billionaires wealth is 25% of GDP.

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