Here are 315 charts on poverty and inequality. Satisfied yet?

May 15, 2013

Merry Christmas, nerds: the OECD is out with its latest disposable income, poverty and inequality numbers for all its member states. The full data are here, but it's more fun to play around with the awesome interactive they created for the occasion:

The takeaways aren't all that surprising. The United States still has greater-than-average inequality and relative poverty than the typical OECD country.

But I always find the pre-tax/transfer section of these kinds of reports really interesting. The United States actually has less pre-tax/transfer poverty than a number of places, including France and Germany, and about equivalent pre-tax/transfer inequality to those countries.

It's government policy that makes the difference, and not mainly tax policy. The United States has one of the most progressive tax systems in the world, but other countries have much more progressive spending habits than we do, so their systems are more progressive on average.

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Dylan Matthews · May 15, 2013