By Crystal Hsu / Staff Reporter
Household disposable income averaged NT$1.09 million ($35,014) last year, up 1% from 2020, while median household disposable income increased slightly by 0.1% to reach NT$929,000, the General Directorate of Budget, Accounting and Statistics (DGBAS) announced on Wednesday.
The average per capita disposable income rose 2.1 percent to NT$377,000, while the median per capita income rose 1.8 percent to NT$326,000, the agency said.
The average household income is used to assess the monetary well-being of the citizens of a country. Median household incomes are taken as indicators of standard of living because they only include disposable income and recognize that people who share accommodation benefit from sharing at least some of their living expenses.
Taipei tops other special municipalities in household disposable income at NT$1.43 million, followed by Taoyuan, New Taipei City, Taichung, Kaohsiung and Tainan, the agency said.
However, people spent less for two consecutive years as most stayed home to avoid infection during COVID-19 outbreaks.
Disease control measures have also affected social gatherings and recreational activities, the DGBAS said.
Last year the income gap hit a 10-year high of 6.15 times as the wealthy benefited from capital gains, another DGBAS survey showed.
The income difference for 2020 was 6.13 times, he said.
Liquidity-driven rallies in global financial markets last year dramatically inflated asset prices for the wealthy.
However, the widening gap is not expected to be linked to the COVID-19 pandemic as the government has introduced waves of relief measures and grant programs to support affected people and businesses, the agency said.
The income of Taiwan’s top 1 percent was a relatively small percentage of overall income compared to other countries, he added.
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