Gabriel Zucman

Gabriel Zucman

Title
Assistant Professor
Department
Dept of Economics
Research Expertise and Interest
inequality, wealth, taxation

In the News

February 20, 2019

Seven early-career faculty win Sloan Research Fellowships

Seven assistant professors from the fields of astronomy, biology, computer science, economics and statistics have been named 2019 Sloan Research Fellows. They are among 126 scholars from the United States and Canada whose early-career achievements mark them as being among today’s very best scientific minds. Winners receive $70,000 over the course of two years toward a research project.

In the News

February 20, 2019

Seven early-career faculty win Sloan Research Fellowships

Seven assistant professors from the fields of astronomy, biology, computer science, economics and statistics have been named 2019 Sloan Research Fellows. They are among 126 scholars from the United States and Canada whose early-career achievements mark them as being among today’s very best scientific minds. Winners receive $70,000 over the course of two years toward a research project.

Featured in the Media

Please note: The views and opinions expressed in these articles are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or positions of UC Berkeley.
October 16, 2019
An article on economists' shifting thoughts on wealth taxes focuses on the work of Berkeley economists Emmanuel Saez and Gabriel Zucman. Professors Saez and Zucman have found that the top 0.1% of taxpayers accounted for about 20% of American wealth in 2012, up from 7% of wealth in 1978 and close to levels last seen in 1929. They believe that concentrated wealth leads to concentration of political power, and that undermines democracy. But they say there are other concerns, as well. For example, in a recent paper they noted that the ratio of household wealth to national income in the U.S. has nearly doubled over the past 40 years, largely due to the rising value of assets. Those higher asset values could mean that either companies are becoming more efficient or economic sclerosis is setting in. Property values may be increasing because regulations make it difficult to build, and higher stock prices could mean that markets are becoming less competitive. Taxing and redistributing wealth could thus be seen as a justified response to misfiring markets.
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October 9, 2019
Christopher Ingraham
For the first time in history, the 400 wealthiest Americans paid a lower effective tax rate than the working class did in 2018, according to new data presented in a book co-authored by Berkeley economists Emmanuel Saez and Gabriel Zucman. The book, called The Triumph of Injustice: How the Rich Dodge Taxes and How to Make Them Pay, explores how this trend developed and how it could be reversed. According to this reporter: "The relatively small tax burden of the super rich is the product of decades of choices made by American lawmakers, some deliberate, others the result of indecisiveness or inertia, Saez and Zucman say. Congress has repeatedly slashed top income tax rates, for instance, and cut taxes on capital gains and estates. Lawmakers also have failed to provide adequate funding for IRS enforcement efforts and allowed multinational companies to shelter their profits in low-tax nations. ... But the tipping point came in 2017, with the passage of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. The legislation, championed by President Trump and then-House Speaker Paul D. Ryan, was a windfall for the wealthy: It lowered the top income tax bracket and slashed the corporate tax rate." Stories on this topic have appeared in nearly 100 sources, including the Washington Post, San Francisco Chronicle Online, and the New York Times.
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October 7, 2019
David Leonhardt
The 400 wealthiest Americans paid a lower total tax rate than any other income group last year, according to new data in a book co-authored by Berkeley economists Emmanuel Saez and Gabriel Zucman. The book, called The Triumph of Injustice: How the Rich Dodge Taxes and How to Make Them Pay, is set for release next week, and according to this columnist, it's "the most important book on government policy that I've read in a long time." He continues: "They have constructed a historical database that tracks the tax payments of households at different points along the income spectrum going back to 1913, when the federal income tax began. The story they tell is maddening -- and yet ultimately energizing. ... 'Many people have the view that nothing can be done,' Zucman told me. 'Our case is, "No, that's wrong. Look at history."' As they write in the book: 'Societies can choose whatever level of tax progressivity they want.' When the United States has raised tax rates on the wealthy and made rigorous efforts to collect those taxes, it has succeeded in doing so. ... And it can succeed again."
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