Income inequality shrinking across Canada

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Policies to help low-income Canadians and the minimum wage hike seems to have gone a long way when it comes to addressing the issue of income inequality.

According to data released by Statistics Canada Monday, after-tax incomes were largely unchanged for Canadian families and persons living alone in 2018, but among the bottom 40 per cent of earners, incomes grew 2.5 per cent.

And since 2012, the bottom 40 per cent have seen after-tax incomes rise by 10.4 per cent, compared to 6.5 per cent for all Canadians, StatCan said.

StatCan’s “after-tax income” measure takes into account transfers from governments, and some of these transfers have become more generous under the federal Liberal government.

The Canada Child Benefit (CCB), introduced as a replacement to an earlier benefit is credited for giving Canadian families with children one of the lowest tax rates among OECD countries.

Ontario’s previous Liberal government hiked the province’s minimum wage to $14 an hour from $11.60 at the beginning of 2018.

Income inequality in Canada surged in the 1990s, when a badly performing economy forced a cut to transfer payments to households, as well as health-care and infrastructure spending. -CINEWS

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