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IFS: If politicians talk about the rich, always ask who they mean

Most of us would like somebody else to pay for the public goods and services we consume.  Politicians tend to give the impression that this is their intention too – often through somewhat vague references to "the rich", “the very best-off” or “those with the broadest shoulders”.  However, it is rarely clear from such statements exactly who is being referred to.

In this observation the Institute for Fiscal Studies provide some figures on how wealth and income are distributed in the UK to help us assess who these people might be. ……  It is also often unclear from politicians’ statements how much wealth or income one should have to qualify as being rich.  What might they have in mind?

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