Via the Korea Herald: Country's income disparity worsens. Excerpt:
Economic polarization between the country's top and bottom income groups increased last year, a government report showed yesterday.
According to the 2007 household accounts report compiled by the National Statistical Office, the country's Gini coefficient rose from 0.351 in 2006 to 0.352.
The Gini coefficient is a measure of income distribution in a society, with values between zero and one, indicating the maximum level of disparity. Last year's Gini coefficient of 0.352 is the highest value recorded since 2003.
Last year, the Gini coefficient for urban households rose more rapidly than the national average and reached 0.313, the largest value since the 0.312 recorded in 2002.
Over the same period, the country's income distribution ratio also increased from 7.62 in 2006 to 7.66 in 2007. The income distribution ratio is the income ratio between households in the top 20 percent and households in the bottom 20 percent. Higher values represent a wider income gap between the two groups.
For urban dwellers, the income distribution ratio increased by a larger margin, 0.06 points, from 5.38 recorded in 2006 to 5.44 last year.
The Ministry of Finance and Economy attributed the change partly to the aging population and the reduction in average income in older households.