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Heather Worthington may need to check her research

Updated: Dec 12, 2019

A new study says that income inequality, not historic factors, feeds the present-day gulf in wealth between white and black households.


By her own admission, CPED "stumbled on" the Mapping Prejudice research in the Star Tribune in 2016 (https://www.mappingprejudice.org) related to mapping racially restrictive covenants. Minneapolis CPED used this research as the cornerstone of the 2040 Plan land use efforts to address racial inequities (https://www.vox.mn/urbancurrents).

However, looking at the latest research out of the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland, it looks like the city may have fixated on a path that really won't address the equity problem:

Figure 3 decomposes the wealth gap at each point in time into its contributing factors as generated by our model. As one would expect, initial conditions play an important role early on. Regardless of the different factors we test, it takes time to undo the extreme racial wealth inequality present in 1962. Over time, however, the model puts less weight on the initial disparity for propagating the racial wealth gap and more weight on persistent systemic differences in economic opportunity. Our model predicts that by 1977 the gap in labor income is a larger contributor to the wealth gap than initial inequality, and by 1990 the labor income gap accounts for more than 80 percent of the wealth gap. The labor income gap remains the dominant factor until far in the future, when the racial wealth gap is nearly closed.


The full report out of the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland can be found here.


It is time to focus on policy that actually addresses the labor income gap.

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