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Inequality Trends For Germany In The Last Two Decades: A Tale Of Two Countries

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Executive Summary

In this paper the authors first document inequality trends in wages, hours worked, earnings, consumption, and wealth for Germany from the last twenty years. They generally find that inequality was relatively stable in West Germany until the German unification, and then trended upwards for wages and market incomes, especially after about 1998. Disposable income and consumption, on the other hand, display only a modest increase in inequality over the same period. These trends occurred against the backdrop of lower trend growth of earnings, incomes and consumption in the 1990s relative to the 1980s.

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