Wealth Inequalities across Generations

Agnese Vitali, Università Bocconi
Frank Furstenberg, University of Pennsylvania

The distribution of income and wealth across generations is changing in many countries worldwide. Using harmonized microdata from the Luxembourg Wealth Study Database, in this contribution we study the intergenerational distribution of wealth comparing the US, several European countries and Japan. Our findings show that intergenerational differences exist in the allocation of wealth across generations and this result holds in all countries. As the distribution of wealth in advanced societies is shifting to later ages, the older age groups are in relative control of the economic resources, compared to young adults. Among young people, we find that low educated individuals and women are the two categories which are more likely found at the bottom of the distribution. We discuss the potential connections (and implications) with economic and residential independence of young adults and the consequences for the organization of the life course in early adulthood.

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Presented in Poster Session 4