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The Gini Coefficient: Gini Declined, But Inequality Remains Very High.

One figure summarizes the data presented in the preceding pages--the Gini coefficient. The OECD publishes Gini data based on the disposable income of households. This number reflects the degree of inequality in countries on a scale between 0 and 1: Zero represents a state in which income divides up equally among all households, while 1 reflects a state in which all the disposable income of a country is concentrated in one household. The closer the index to 1, the greater the inequality.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu recently boasted that the Gini coefficient of Israel declined over the past two years. While this is true, Israel remains distant from the lower inequality rates of western Europe. In 2015, the most recent year for which the OECD published comparative figures that included Israel, Israel's Gini score (for household disposable income) was 0.360, ranking Israel uncomfortably near the top of the inequality list.

The National Insurance Institute published a Gini coefficient of 0.359 for 2016. This represents a decrease of 1.8% compared to 2015, and is the lowest in two decades. (38)

Inequality in OECD Countries, 2015
Gini coefficient, household disposable income after direct taxes and
transfer payments (1)

(*)Iceland       0.246
Slovenia         0.250
Slovakia         0.251
(*)Denmark       0.256
Czech Republic   0.258
Finland          0.260
Belgium          0.268
Norway           0.272
Australia        0.276
Sweden           0.278
(*)Hungary       0.288
(*)Germany       0.289
Poland           0.292
France           0.295
South Korea      0.295
Switzerland      0.297
(*)Ireland       0.298
Netherlands      0.303
Canada           0.318
(*)OECD          0.318
(*)Italy         0.326
Estonia          0.330
Portugal         0.336
(*)Austria       0.337
Greece           0.340
Spain            0.345
Latvia           0.346
(*) New Zealand  0.349
Britain          0.360
Israel           0.360
Lithuania        0.372
United States    0.390
Turkey           0.404
Chile            0.454
(*) Mexico       0.459

(1) (*) data from 2014.
Sources: OECD. 2017. Income Inequality (indicator), doi: 10.1787
/459aa7f1-en (accessed on 5 September 2017).

OECD average from OECD Income Distribution Database (IDD): Gini,
poverty, income, Methods and Concepts.

Note: Table made from bar graph.
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Title Annotation:WAGES
Publication:Israel: A Social Report
Date:Jan 1, 2018
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