The Economist writes,
Up to a point, spreading the wealth around carries no growth penalty: growth in income per person is not meaningfully lower in countries with more redistribution. But economies that redistribute a lot may enjoy shorter growth spells, the authors reckon. When the gap between the market and net Ginis is 13 points or more (as in much of western Europe) further redistribution shrinks the typical expansion. The authors caution against drawing hasty conclusions. Details surely matter; nationalising firms and doling out profits would presumably be worse for growth than taxing property to fund education.
Basically, a high level of inequality or an extreme level of redistribution can both lead to slower growth within countries.
Inequality as measured by Gini coefficients has been rising. One contribution to this is that the wealthy receive a disproportionate amount of income from capital, as opposed to labor. The above diagrams show how labor income inequality has indeed risen over the past five decades in both the US and the UK, however, capital income has essentially always been very concentrated. Branko Milanovic offers a few solutions to this,
Deconcentrating capital ownership can be done in at least three ways:
If you're American, probably quite wealthy, according a recent Economist article,
IF YOU had only $2,222 to your name (adding together your bank deposits, financial investments and property holdings, and subtracting your debts) you might not think yourself terribly fortunate. But you would be wealthier than half the world’s population, according to this year’s Global Wealth Report by the Credit Suisse Research Institute. If you had $71,560 or more, you would be in the top tenth. If you were lucky enough to own over $744,400 you could count yourself a member of the global 1% that voters everywhere are rebelling against.
McKinsey Global Institute's Gender Parity Score (1.00 = gender parity)
Research from a recent McKinsey & Co. post,
Globally, women spend thrice the amount of time as men on unpaid care work—an economic contribution conservatively worth $10 trillion, or 13 percent of global GDP, for which they are not compensated or recognized. Turning to work that is paid and measured, women generate about 37 percent of the world’s GDP, despite being about half of the world’s total population. At current rates of progress in women rising to the C-suite, it will take more than 100 years to bridge the gender gap in the upper reaches of US corporations.