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Sources and References


Overall inequality: Series 1: Gini coefficient of equivalised disposable household (weekly) income from Table 1.1 in catalogue 6523.0 (Australian Bureau Statistics –ABS- Household Income and Wealth – Australia 2013-2014) (accessed 21 February 2017). According to the ABS, although the estimates for 2003–04 and 2005–06 have been recompiled to reflect the new measures of income introduced in 2007-2008, “not all components introduced in 2007–08 are available for earlier cycles” (see Wilkins, 2014 for a detailed assessment of such methodological changes for income distribution measures; linked at 1995 to series from LIS Key Figures (accessed 21 February 2017). Series 2: Gini coefficient for gross household income calculated from Ingles (1981, Table 9). Series 3: Gini coefficient for individual gross income from Hancock (1971, Table 4).

Top income shares: Share of top 1 per cent in total gross income (individuals, excluding capital gains) from, based on work of Atkinson and Leigh (2007), updated and revised by Roger Wilkins of the University of Melbourne. For a critique of the Atkinson/Leigh estimates, and alternative estimates for the period 1970 to 2010, see Burkhauser, Hahn and Wilkins (2015).

Poverty measures: Percentage of individuals in households with equivalised (square root scale) disposable income below 60 per cent of the median from LIS Key Figures (accessed 21 February 2017).

Dispersion of earnings: Earnings at top decile as percentage of median earnings, from May survey, Employee Earnings and Hours (all employees) taken from Atkinson (2008, Appendix A, Table A.5), updated from reports for 2006 (Employee Earnings and Hours, Table 5), 2008 (Employee Earnings and Hours, Table 6), 2010 (Employee Earnings and Hours, Table 8), 2012 (Data cube: ‘ALL EMPLOYEES, Distribution’, Table 1) and 2014 (Data cube: ‘ALL EMPLOYEES, Distribution’, Table 2) from the Australian Bureau of Statistics website, catalogue 6306.0 (accessed 21 February 2017), linked backwards at 1998 to series back to 1975 given by OECD (Atkinson, 2008, Table A.3).

Wealth inequality: Share of top 1 per cent in total household net wealth from Katic and Leigh (2015, Appendix Tables, Table A1 and A2): 1915 observation based on national wealth survey (tabulations), inheritance tax series used from 1953 to 1978 (when the inheritance tax was abolished), and more recent observations, since 1987, based on national wealth surveys (micro data).