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Since 1995, Zillionaires Have Received Biggest Tax Breaks

There’s always a lot of noise on campaign trails about cutting taxes. But as the Economic Policy Institute (EPI) points out, the real question is: Whose taxes?  

A new report by EPI finds that since 1995, the wealthiest of the wealthy in this country have gotten far more tax breaks than those in the middle- and lower-income brackets, with the average effective federal tax rates falling more than 9 percentage points for the top 0.01 percent of households and more than 6 percentage points for the remaining households in the top 1 percent. Effective tax rates also have fallen for households between the 20th and 99th percentile, but by less than 3 percentage points.

As EPI economist Josh Bivens writes:

“With the Bush tax cuts scheduled to expire on Jan. 1, 2013, tax fairness is likely to be a prominent topic throughout the Presidential campaign.”


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