Scotland’s top 1 per cent get even richer

Analysis by Scottish Labour has revealed that the incomes of those earning over £150,000 a year in Scotland has increased by 89 per cent since 2011.

Meanwhile everyone else faces years of stagnant or falling incomes. Real weekly earnings are yet to recover to their 2008 level, and those and low and middle incomes can expect to say their wages fall in the next five years, according to the Resolution Foundation.

The growth in incomes for the top 1 per cent reflects a trend towards widening inequality, which had been falling in the years since the crash. This is underlined by the changes to taxes and benefits which will hit those at the bottom end of the distribution particularly hard.

The figures also show that now is the time to raise taxes to properly fund public services and future investment in Scotland. Policymakers had previously demurred on the basis that there were insufficient numbers of high earners in Scotland - that is clearly no longer the case.

Commenting on the figures, Labour Finance spokesperson James Kelly said:

“These figures show we need to drop the timid tinkering on tax we have seen from the SNP.

“It’s time for real change, not just more of the same: a more equal Scotland where the broadest shoulders bear the biggest burden.

"The income of Scotland’s super rich is soaring - but the SNP’s income tax changes tinkered around the edges, putting only a penny on the top rate.

“The impact of that is cuts to public services and squeezed living standards for working class people in Scotland, with over 400,000 people in Scotland earning less than the living wage.

“Only Labour is willing to take the bold steps we need to see on tax, by making the richest few pay their fair share to fund the public services we all rely on.”

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