Is inequality in Malaysia really going down? Some preliminary explorations
Please cite the paper as:
&lquo;Lee, Hwok-Aun, (2013), Is inequality in Malaysia really going down? Some preliminary explorations, World Economics Association (WEA) Conferences, No. 3 2013, Conference on the Inequalities in Asia, 27th May to 12th July 2013&rquo;
This paper explores inequality in Malaysia, which poses a puzzle in recent years. While official figures indicate declining household income inequality, public discourse generally perceives persistently high or rising inequality. Assembling data from a range of sources, I obtain evidence of increasing concentration of earnings and wealth in the topmost strata, an outcome not captured in official Gini coefficients. Notably, young workers’ earnings have lagged, and public services have expanded the proportion of managers and professionals. These are interesting and consequential findings, but do not present sufficient evidence to deduce patterns of overall inequality.