Chairwoman Maloney Applauds BEA for Taking Step to Measure Income Inequality

Mar 6, 2020
Press Release

Congresswoman Carolyn B. Maloney (D-NY), the Chairwoman of the Committee on Oversight and Reform and the former Chair of the Joint Economic Committee, issued the following statement after the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) published its initial estimates of how personal income is distributed across households. Today’s prototype statistics released by BEA are consistent with legislation Maloney introduced, The Measuring Real Income Growth Act (H.R. 707), which would require BEA to publish distributional analyses of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) alongside the topline GDP numbers.

“I commend the Bureau of Economic Analysis for taking an important step today that will help inform policymakers about who is benefiting from economic growth and who is being left behind. GDP is an aggregate figure that tells us how fast the economy is growing, but it doesn’t tell us how that growth is distributed. By analyzing how economic growth is spread across the income spectrum, we can see how inequality is changing and devise policies to address it.

“I encourage stakeholders, particularly economic researchers, to examine BEA’s prototype and to provide feedback, as BEA has requested. I will continue to work to have this reporting codified into law, so the public and policymakers can count on timely information on how economic growth breaks down by income level. This information will help us to see, in clear terms, whom the economy is working for.”

Congresswoman Maloney introduced the Measuring Real Income Growth Act (H.R. 707) this Congress and also in the 115th Congress. The legislation would require BEA to publish distributional analyses of GDP. These new reports would give policymakers a clearer picture of how economic growth is distributed among Americans of all income levels, providing new perspective on economic inequality.