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In Canada, income inequality and poverty have increased rapidly since the mid-1990s

In the last 10 years, the rich have been getting richer leaving both middle and poorer income classes behind. The rich in Canada are particularly rich compared to their counterparts in other countries – the average income of the richest 10% is US$ 71,000 in purchasing power parities, which is one third above the OECD average of US$54,000. The poor and the middle classes are also richer than the OECD average, but by less -- their average incomes are only 18% above that of their counterparts in a typical OECD country.

Poverty rate (% of  persons living with less than 50% of median income)

One fifth of the increase in income inequality is linked to changes in the age and household structure of the Canadian population, such as growing shares of single-parent households or people living alone.

 Inequality of household earnings has increased significantly. Only Germany saw a similar rate of increase during the past 10 years.

 Canada spends less on cash benefits such as unemployment benefits and family benefits than most OECD countries. Partly as a result, taxes and transfers do not reduce inequality by as much as in many other countries.

Furthermore, their effect on inequality has been declining over time.
Over the past 10 years poverty (meaning people who live on less than half median incomes) has increased for all age groups, by around 2 to 3 percentage points to an overall rate of 12%.


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Jacques Dufresne's

The editor of L'Encyclopédie de L'Agora and well known newspaper chronicler and philosopher, analyses actuality through the looking glass of Belonging.
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