Do the rich pay their way?

The information below is projected from 2009 historical data to the 2012 position – they are approximate figures only (Revenues calculations not mine as we don’t have access to the most current data) and Universal Social Charge (USC) is not included in these figures. If USC was included, the likely result would be to increase further the proportion of tax and USC paid by the highest earners because their rates are higher as would be the quantum of tax received. Individuals are sorted by reference to their gross income from all sources upon which income tax is levied.

Of individuals liable to income tax:

the top earning  1 per cent of total  numbers account for 21 per cent of total tax
the top earning 10 per cent of total numbers account for 60 per cent of total tax
the top earning 50 per cent of total numbers account for 97 per cent of total tax

Another way to look at this is that the top 1% pay just over 20% of tax collected, the next 9% pay the next 40% so combined this comes to 60% of taxes paid, well over 50% is covered by the top 10%. Then when we factor in the top 50% they cover the next 37%, which means cumulatively 50% of the people who pay income tax cover close to 100% of the income tax take, that’s 50% who pay 97% of what is collected.

And somehow we are still not progressive enough?


  1. Niall

    This is a bunch of disingenuous nonsense, and you know it.

    On a very simple level, 41% tax on, say, €100,000 will have less of an effect on quality of life than 25% on €20,000.

    Further, maybe this says something about the obscene disparity in wealth and income distribution in this country, as much as anything else. 1% of the population hold 34% of the accumulated wealth in this country.

    Just have a little think about that.

  2. Niall,

    How do you know what difference it makes by looking at income only? Surely the way to assess the needs of a person have to take into account their costs? The person on €20,000 could be a single person living at home, the one on €100,000 might have five kids and be mortgaged to the hilt?

    The ‘disparity’ you talk of is finding an issue with distributions on a relative scale, check out the US treasury long term study on incomes and you’ll find that the groups are constantly changing, the poor of 10 years ago are rarely the poor of today, in fact, 35% of the ‘rich’ today were classed as ‘poor’ 10 years ago, in return I would ask that you have a think about facts and not about pre-determined political ideology.

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