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The jobs market is humming these days, but income inequality continues to grow. Torsten Slok, Chief International Economist with Deustche Bank Securities, sent the following chart to clients on Tuesday, drawn on the most recent work by inequality researchers Thomas Piketty, Emmanuel Saez, and Gabriel Zucman. Pikkety is the author of the much-discussed 2014 book, Capital in the 21st Century.

Why it matters: The yawning gap between U.S. haves and have nots is only growing more severe, and there are no signs that the trend will slow on its own. These are the numbers Bernie Sanders studied before wagering that the Democratic Party's path to electoral success is through aggressive economic populism.

Expand chart
Data: Deutsche Bank Research; Chart: Andrew Witherspoon / Axios

The future of work will make this worse: Some economists argue that rising income inequality can be blamed on an unprecedented, rapid decline in the price of automation technology since the early 1980s. As machines become cheaper, the argument goes, business owners can simply replace workers with capital investments and reap more profits for themselves.

If this theory is correct, we should expect income inequality to rise ever-more quickly, as applications for artificial intelligence increase and the amount of computing power per dollar available rises exponentially.

Go deeper

Trump's assault on Chinese tech left loose ends galore

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

President Trump's haphazard war on Chinese tech has left the Biden administration with a raft of unfinished business involving efforts to restrict Chinese firms and products in U.S. markets.

Why it matters: The Chinese and American tech industries are joined at the hip in many ways, and that interdependence has shaped decades of prosperity. But now security concerns and economic rivalries are wrenching them apart.

Biden's thin, short path

President Biden has a thin, short path to success in his first six to nine months, top advisers tell Axios. His success, or failure, will dictate whether he can hold off both Republican critics — and activist Democrats who want him to go bigger, faster.

The big picture: Biden has to get vaccinations moving and the stimulus bill pumping, so the economy will start rocking, advisers said. That’s why he loaded his White House with veteran loyalists focused almost exclusively on these two topics.

Most states aren't prioritizing prisons for COVID vaccines

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

Most states have not made much of their incarcerated populations eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine.

The big picture: Jails and prisons have seen big outbreaks and a higher death rate than the general public, but with supplies still limited, most governors aren't putting prisoners at the top of the list for vaccines.