Data released by the Federal Reserve on March 28 shows the top one percent of Americans are the richest they’ve ever been.

The new data reveals that at the end of the fourth quarter last year they had a record $44.6 trillion in wealth. That’s up from $30 trillion in 2020.

The main driver of wealth gains last year was from the stock market hitting record highs. While wages are increasing for average Americans, the top one percent is gaining wealth at a much faster pace.

The wealth of U.S. billionaires is currently at $5.5 trillion, which is up 88 percent since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. The nation’s rich accruing so much wealth in recent years has renewed calls for a wealth tax.


Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass), Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.), and others are pushing to pass the Ultra-Millionaire Tax Act, which would put a two-cent tax on every dollar of wealth over $50 million. Warren referred to U.S. President Joe Biden calling for higher taxes on billionaires during his State of the Union when the bill was reintroduced earlier this month.

“As President Biden says: No one thinks it’s fair that Jeff Bezos gets enough tax loopholes that he pays at a lower rate than a public school teacher,” said Senator Warren. “All my bill is asking is that when you make it big, bigger than $50 million dollars, then on that next dollar, you pitch in two cents, so everyone else can have a chance.”

As progressives fight to pass a wealth tax at the federal level, legislators in many states are pursuing their own wealth taxes.

—Thor Benson,