Social Classes, Inequality and Redistributive Policies in Canada

CIRPEE Working Paper 08-17

26 Pages Posted: 5 Sep 2008  

Abdelkrim Araar

Laval University - Département d'Économique

Date Written: August 2008


The social performance of fiscal redistributive mechanisms in Canada continues to receive a growing interest from politicians and research scientists. The aim of this paper is to assess the evolution of social classes in Canada and to check whether the market and governmental redistributive factors have affected their evolution during the last decade. We focus on the dynamic of inequality, polarization and progressivity of the fiscal system. The results of this study confirm the effectiveness of governmental redistributive mechanism to decrease inequality and polarization significantly and to maintain the middle social class at the detriment of the poorest one. The other evidence concerns the chronic increase in population share and well-being of the rich class. Finally, the progressivity of fiscal system has registered a significant increase during the last few years.

Keywords: Social classes, poverty, inequality, redistribution

JEL Classification: D63, I32, O12

Suggested Citation

Araar, Abdelkrim, Social Classes, Inequality and Redistributive Policies in Canada (August 2008). CIRPEE Working Paper 08-17. Available at SSRN: or

Abdelkrim Araar (Contact Author)

Laval University - Département d'Économique ( email )

Ste-Foy, Quebec 179Que G1K

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