So it has been used to illustrate American inequality and its effect on inter-generational social mobility. H/T P Krugman.
But my, it also says something about Britain and its enduring class system.
The vertical axis shows how much a one per cent rise in your father’s income improves your expected income – so the higher the number, the lower expected social mobility. The horizontal measure is the Gini coefficient – a measure of inequality.
Of course, it’s important to put charts like this in perspective, which is why we should also consult Miles Corak, the University of Ottawa professor whose work has been used here by Krueger (and Krugman).
Here’s Corak’s unabridged Great Gatsby Curve.
A rather different picture, innit?
Inequality from generation to generation: the United States in comparison – Miles Corak