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World wealth gap widening

Posted by / January 22, 2019

The gap between the world’s richest people and the world’s poorest people is widening at an alarming rate. According to Oxfam International, last year billionaires’ wealth increased by a jaw-dropping $2.5 billion––per day. That represents an overall wealth increase of 12%. Meanwhile, the 3.8 billion people who make up poorest half of the world’s population saw their wealth decline by 11%.

The study, also summarized in “Public good or private wealth?“, “shows the growing gap between rich and poor is undermining the fight against poverty, damaging our economies and fuelling [sic]public anger across the globe.”

In addition, “The report reveals that the number of billionaires has almost doubled since the financial crisis, with a new billionaire created every two days between 2017 and 2018, yet wealthy individuals and corporations are paying lower rates of tax than they have in decades.”

In a statement, Paul O’Brien, Oxfam America’s vice president of policy and advocacy, said, “There is going to be a broader and increasingly energized public conversation in the US and globally on what a fair and effective tax system looks like that will be very different from today.”

This year’s data is part of a trend. According to last year’s report:

Eighty two percent of the wealth generated last year went to the richest one percent of the global population, while the 3.7 billion people who make up the poorest half of the world saw no increase in their wealth, according to a new Oxfam report released today.  The report is being launched as political and business elites gather for the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.

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