Income gap in Brazil remains wide, government statistics show; richest 10% of Brazilians possess 44.5% of nation's wealth, while poorest 10% possess 1.1%

SAO PAULO , November 16, 2011 () – Official figures show that Brazil's economy remains highly unequal.

Data from the 2010 census show the income of the richest 10 percent of the population is 39 times greater than that of the poorest 10 percent. The government's IBGE statistics agency says that the top 10 percent had 44.5 percent of the nation's wealth, while the poorest 10 percent had only 1.1.

The agency says that average monthly household income among the richest 10 percent was about $5,570, while among the poorest 10 percent it was just $127.

The figures were released on Wednesday.

IBGE press officer Eduardo Peret says the income gap has diminished, but the officials have changed their way of calculating the figures and so cannot make statistical comparisons with 2000.

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