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RIADE – O aumento das desigualdades ao nível dos rendimentos foi um tema central do Fórum Económico Mundial, que este ano se realizou em Davos. Como é do conhecimento geral, a economia dos EUA registou um crescimento significativo ao longo das últimas três décadas. Contudo, o rendimento mediano das famílias não acompanhou este crescimento. As famílias que representam 1% dos detentores de elevados rendimentos (ou melhor, 0,01%) foram as mais beneficiadas, algo que as sociedades não deverão tolerar por muito tempo.

Muitas pessoas temem que estejamos perante um fenómeno mundial com causas semelhantes em toda a parte, um argumento-chave do célebre livro O Capital no Século XXI de Thomas Piketty. Contudo, esta premissa pode ser perigosamente falaciosa.

É fundamental estabelecer uma distinção entre a desigualdade em termos de produtividade entre as empresas e a repartição desigual dos rendimentos dentro das empresas. A luta tradicional entre trabalho e capital tem sido travada em prol deste último: trabalhadores e proprietários lutam pela sua fatia do bolo. Existe, porém, uma profunda desigualdade no que se refere à produtividade das empresas, o que significa que o volume do bolo é significativamente variável. É nomeadamente o caso dos países em desenvolvimento, onde é comum encontrar diferenças de produtividade decuplicadas a nível regional ou nacional e, muitas vezes, ainda mais acentuadas a nível municipal.

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