Left Behind: Partisan Identity and Wealth Inequality
47 Pages Posted: 4 Jun 2019 Last revised: 6 Dec 2022
Date Written: May 29, 2022
This paper investigates whether and how opposing partisans differ in their wealth accumulation. Using microdata from a longitudinal U.S. household survey, I document that Democrats are less likely than Republicans to participate in the stock market. Moreover, the partisan gap widens sharply under Democratic presidencies, precisely when the stock market returns are substantially higher. This dynamic pattern accounts for more than half of the discrepancy in wealth accumulation between Democrats and Republicans over presidential cycles. Further investigation suggests the importance of partisan identity. In the U.K. context, I find similar results on a sample of Labour and Conservative partisans.
Keywords: partisan identity, wealth inequality, political cycles, stock market participation
JEL Classification: D31, G40, G51
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation