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Gap between rich and poor starts to widen

Income inequality between the richest and poorest in the UK widened last year, official figures show, as benefits were squeezed but wages rose.
The richest fifth of the population saw incomes rise by 4.7%, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) said.
The average income of the poorest fifth, in contrast, shrunk by 1.6%.
The growing gap is a reversal of the trend seen in the past decade, during which income inequality reduced.

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The typical household in the UK had a disposable income (mainly pay, pensions and benefits after tax) of £28,400 last year, the ONS said.
This middle-ranking, or median average, income level was broadly unchanged compared with 2017, after allowing for the rising cost of living. Last year saw a "levelling off" of income after it had been rising at an average of 2.2% a year since 2013, the ONS said.
Among pensioner households, there was a typical disposable income of £23,900 last year.
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