On thinking about the the data around inequality, I had not considered fully the longitudinal data.
This is an oversight especially considering my background. My family started off mid-tier economically, with some low tier/working class (we don’t call it working class in Asia, typically - that’s more a British notion) elements but with a valuable “education asset”. Objectively, I am now in one of the very highest tiers socio-economically. My family have risen in wealth enormously over the years.
Now my birth tier itself has not improved as much as my current rich tier, but there has been social mobility. The people in the tier are different.
The social mobility data itself is complex. There is evidence that cities and in the UK especially London do well in promoting social mobility and (to me) this is likely due to agglomeration / network effects. Social mobility happens in rich and poor areas of London, so absolute wealth is not potentially the key problem.
Challenge yourself by reading this blog: https://medium.com/@russroberts/do-the-rich-capture-all-the-gains-from-economic-growth-c96d93101f9c
Dive deeper to a longitudinal study:
Growth, Inequality and Absolute Mobility in the United States, 1962-2014
“…We find that absolute mobility decreases with income. Individuals and families occupying the lower ranks of the income distribution have a higher probability of increasing their income over short time periods than those occupying higher ranks. This also occurs during periods of increasing inequality. Our findings stem from the importance of the changes in the composition of income percentiles. “
Although also see the Dalio piece… mobility is down but 50% of 30 year olds still do earn more than their parents. (this seems to conflict with some Lopoo (Pew Charitable Trust) data - so unsure who is right.