Tuesday, 19 July 2011

Where do I fit in?

The Institute for Fiscal Studies has a new tool which lets you calculate how wealthy or poor you are compared with the rest of the population.

The quiz asks you for your income, how many people there are in your household and how much your council tax bill is. So I decided to give it a go using the value of what my notional income will be in my first job after graduating. As a student of engineering, when I graduate the average starting salary for my profession is £24,000 a year. If I assume that I'll have to pay an average council tax bill of £120 a month then I'd work out to have an income higher than 73% of the population which is equivalent to 47.3 million people.

It really makes you think and puts in context just how screwed up earnings in this country are. Professionals earning £25,000+ make up just a tiny proportion of the population and everyone else has to make do with far less than most of my peers would consider a "basic" income. It definitely challenges your assumptions.

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