Income differentials

Updated: 16 Dec 2020
Next update: 15 Dec 2021

The Gini coefficient is the most common indicator describing income differences. The higher value the Gini coefficient gets, the more unequally is income distributed. The biggest possible value for the Gini coefficient is one. Then the highest earning income recipient receives all the income. The smallest Gini coefficient value is 0, when the income of all income recipients is equal. In the income distribution statistics, Gini coefficients are presented as percentages (multiplied by one hundred). The Gini coefficient describes relative income differences. The Gini coefficient does not change if the incomes of all income earners change by the same percentage. The Gini coefficient is calculated based on the household-dwelling units’ disposable money income per consumption unit.


Income differentials decreased slightly in 2019

Statistics Finland's income distribution statistics show that income differentials decreased slightly in 2019 compared with the previous year. Real income increased in all income deciles except in the highest-income decile. The income level of the population's highest-income decile decreased by 0.3 per cent in real terms from 2018 to 2019. The income of medium income earners (income deciles V to IX) increased by 1.5 per cent and the income of the four lowest income deciles by 1.1 per cent. The income level of the lowest-income decile grew by 0.6 per cent.