Sunday, October 14, 2007
The Tax Man Reporteth
It will be very interesting to here the spin coming from both sides on this come Monday morning...
NEW YORK (Reuters) - The richest one percent of Americans earned a postwar record of 21.2 percent of all income in 2005, up from 19 percent a year earlier, reflecting a widening income disparity among different classes in the nation, the Wall Street Journal reported, citing new Internal Revenue Service data.
The data showed that the fortunes of the bottom 50 percent of Americans are worsening, with that group earning 12.8 percent of all income in 2005, down from 13.4 percent the year before, the paper said.
Now to be fair, later in the article, numbers about the top 1% show that "the wealthiest, as a group, carried a disproportionate share of the overall tax burden -- 1.6 percent of all taxes, versus just 1.1 percent of all income." But since this report deals mainly with the Tx Man's AGI (Adjusted Gross Income) scale, what isn't factored into accumulated wealth owned. To give you an idea of the difference this makes, consider that in order to make the top 1% of wage earners, of which there are only 400, the bar you have to clear for a declared income is an AGI of $364,657. To make the top 5%, all you need is an AGI of $145,283.
Of course the Times article closes with this little gem:
(New York Times, 10,14) A second report that the I.R.S. will make public today shows that the number of Americans with high incomes who pay no taxes anywhere in the world has reached a record. In 2000, there were 2,022 Americans with incomes of more than $200,000 who paid no income tax anywhere in the world, up from just 37 in 1977, when the report was first issued.
Which means that there are five times as many wealthy wage earners not paying any taxes at all then there wage earners in the top 1%.
I might have missed it, but nowhere in the report could I find whether or not the tax dodgers and their 0% of paid taxes was figured into the percentage of taxes paid by the top 5%.