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Sources and References


Overall inequality: Gini coefficient for equivalised household disposable income from EU-SILC (ilc_di12 series), Eurostat website (accessed 27 February 2017).

Top income shares: Share of top 1 per cent in total market income before direct tax and benefits (tax units, including capital gains). They cover all taxable incomes (except benefits, i.e. child benefits and tax rebates on mortgage interest costs). Pension earnings and capital gains are included. Figures are provided by Stefan Ólafsson, based on the work of Ólafsson and Kristjánsson (2012) and Ólafsson and Kristjánsson (2013).

Poverty measures: series 1: Percentage of individuals living in households with equivalised (EU scale) disposable income below 60 per cent of the median from EU-SILC (People at risk of poverty after social transfers table), Eurostat website (accessed 27 Feb 2017); series 2: for 1986-1995 (with 50 per cent of the median) from Ólafsson and Sigurðsson(1996, Figure 2).

Dispersion of earnings: Earnings at top decile as percentage of median earnings, from OECD iLibrary, Employment and Labour Market Statistics, Gross earnings decile ratios (accessed 22 February 2017); Gini coefficient for employment earnings from Ólafsson, S and Sigurðsson (1996, Figure 2).

Wealth inequality: No suitable data were found.


  • Ólafsson, S and Sigurðsson, A S, 1996, “Poverty in Iceland” in A Puide, editor, Den nordiska fattingdomens utveckling och struktur, Tema Nord, Copenhagen.
  • Ólafsson, S and Kristjánsson, A S, 2012, “Þróun tekjuskiptingarinnar á Íslandi 1992 to 2010”, in Icelandic Review of Politics and Administration, vol. 8: 39-71
  • Ólafsson, S and Kristjánsson, A S, 2013, “Income Inequality in Boom and Bust: A Tale from Iceland’s Bubble Economy” in J C Gornick and M Jäntti, editors, Income inequality: Economic disparities and the middle class in affluent countries, Stanford University Press, Stanford.