Then, in 1932 during the great depression the highest rate shot up to 63%, which was for people making over a million dollars. Obviously, there were not a lot of people making over a million dollars a year during the great depression. Still, it was 50% for those making over $88,000. And the lowest tax bracket went up to 4%. Of course, those who had lost their jobs were not paying anything.
Again tax brackets remained the same until 1936 when the highest rate went up again to 79% for people making over $5,000,000. Still, it was 70% for people making over $300,000 and 59% for those making over $90,000. The lowest bracket remained at 4%.
In 1940 tax rates remained the same, but the thresholds were lowered for those having to file returns. Those who were single had to file if their income was over $800. Those who were married had to file if their income was over $2000.
Once again, tax brackets remained the same until 1941 when the top bracket went up to 81% (for those making over $5 million) and the bottom bracket went up significantly to 10%. Furthermore, any couple making over $1500 had to file a return.
Then in 1942 the top bracket went up to 88%, which applied to anyone making over $300,000. The lowest tax bracket was raised to 19%. Obviously, this is during the time of WW2. A couple of things to note about this. One is that the highest tax bracket started a lot lower. Granted not many households were making over $300,000 in 1942. Second, the lowest tax bracket was a lot higher at close to 20%. Thus, there was more of a shared responsibility during war time by all of those making over the exemption amount which was again reduced $1200 for married couples.
The top tax rate jumped again in 1944, this time to 94% and applied to anyone making over $200,000. The lowest rate also went up to 23%.
To continue: See Baby Boom years through Ronald Reagan