How Much Do You Have to Make to Be in the Top 1%?


In the last several years, we’ve seen numerous movements pop up in an attempt narrow the income gap between the poor and the wealthy elite. Between activists at the Occupy Wall Street rallies, the “Fight for $15” to increase the federal minimum wage, and Bernie Sanders’ presidential campaign, wealth inequality became a major subject in the years after the 2007-2008 financial crisis.

Unfortunately, little is being done about increasing wages for the lower and middle class. Working families continue to struggle to make ends meet or get out of debt while wealthier individuals take home considerably more money.

But just how much more are the top 1% of Americans actually earning? That’s what the Economic Policy Institute recently researched and reported in their 2016 report, “Income inequality in the U.S. by state, metropolitan area, and county.” What they found was a widening gap between average citizens and the richest of the rich in each state that needs to be seen to be believed.

It takes a lot to be part of the 1%. But how much, exactly?

What do you have to make in a year to be in the top 1% of your state.

With that in mind, how much more does the top 1% make than the other 99% of the state?


In New York, the average one-percenter living in the state makes more than 45 times the average state salary. That’s the difference between the 1% and the 99% in the country. Increasing the minimum wage could effectively narrow this gap, but given the current political climate, that sadly won’t be happening any time soon.