joint with Kenneth A. Shores, revision requested at The Review of Economics and Statistics.
To describe preferences for income mobility/equality, we generate statistics that can be interpreted as marginal rates of substitution and converted to willingness-to-pay (WTP). All else constant, U.S. residents are willing to pay $2,736 dollars to increase income equality 10 percentiles and $1,778 dollars to increase income mobility 10 percentiles. Liberals’ WTP for income equality is two times larger than conservatives’; there are no significant differences in the WTP for mobility. Educational attainment, income, ideology, and beliefs about upward mobility negatively predict a WTP for income equality; the only predictor of the WTP for mobility is gender.