Top incomes under finance-driven capitalism, 1990-2010: power resources and regulatory orders

Eoin Flaherty

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

30 Citations (Scopus)
233 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

This article examines the impact of financialisation on the income shares of the top 1% from 1990-2010, through a panel analysis of 14 OECD countries. Drawing together literatures stressing the dependence of income inequality on the structural bargaining power of capital relative to labour, and of the dependence of accumulation on underlying institutionalised modes of state regulation, it shows that financialisation has significantly enhanced top income shares net of underlying controls. Whilst the income shares of the top 1% appear responsive to variables typical of wider studies of personal income inequality, we emphasise distinctive mechanisms of top income growth linked to the rising dominance of financial instruments and actors, facilitated by a historically specific regulatory order. These conditions were key to the emergence of a state of ‘asymmetric bargaining’ which disproportionately enhanced the fortunes of the wealthy. Results thus emphasise the importance of class-biased power resources and underlying regulatory structures, as determinants both of income concentration and of the distribution of economic rewards beyond growth capacity alone.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)417-447
Number of pages31
JournalSocio-Economic Review
Volume13
Issue number3
Early online date08 Jun 2015
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2015

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Top incomes under finance-driven capitalism, 1990-2010: power resources and regulatory orders'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this