The top 1% have watched their salaries increase by 188%

US Taxes by class

The Top 1% in recent decades have watched their salaries increase by 188% while the middle class and lower-income Americans experienced wage growth of just 18%, according to new government data from the Congressional Budget Office.

The outsized earnings by the top 1% helped to increase the inequality gap between Americans.

The Congressional Budget Office examined Americans’ incomes and tax burdens between 1979 and 2013. The federal tax system helped reduce the gap, but not as much as government transfers — including cash assistance, food stamps, Social Security, Medicare and unemployment insurance — did.

The CBO also found that the average federal tax rate of the Top 1% was 34% in 2013. Those in the middle class, or the middle 60% of Americans by income, had an average federal tax rate of 13.8%.

The wealthy pay a larger share of the nation’s taxes with the top 20% of the income scale earned a little more than half of total before-tax income, but paid more than two-thirds of all federal taxes, the CBO found. Taxpayers in the middle quintile took home about 14% of the income and paid about 9% percent of the taxes. And the poorest 20% received about 5% of the income and paid less than 1% of the taxes.

Taxpayers in the middle quintile took home about 14% of the income and paid about 9% percent of the taxes. And the poorest 20% received about 5% of the income and paid less than 1% of the taxes.