82% of the World’s Wealth is Held by 1% of the Population

the World’s Wealth

Wealth is continued to be owned by a small minority. Oxfam says the gap between rich and poor widened last year.  A very small part of the population holds the majority of the world’s wealth.

8 of the Richest People Have as Much Wealth as the Entire Poorest Half

The rich seem to be getting richer.  Factors such as tax evasion, erosion of workers’ rights and firms’ influence on policy seem to be to blame. Oxfam calculated that they 8 richest people in the world have as much wealth as the poorest half of the world.  In 2017 the poor did not see any increase in income.

Although the data is changing due to readjustment of figures, not matter how one looks at it the level of inequality is unacceptable. 

The Super-Rich Don’t Publicise Their Net Worth

It’s not an easy task working out how much wealth the super-rich have and how little the poor.  Many of the poorest countries keep poor statistics. And the super-rich tend not to publicise their worth.

Some of those considered poor may not be poor at all.  Many of those considered ‘poor’ are university educated professionals with large debt. Student loans or mortgages may not be paid off by most until many years after graduation.  But regardless, there is still great inequality in the world.

How Does Oxfam Work Out the Data?

Oxfam’s report is based on data from Forbes and the annual Credit Suisse Global Wealth Databook, which gives the distribution of the world’s wealth going back to 2000.

Overall value of an individual’s assets, mainly property and land, minus debts, are what the survey uses to determine what he or she “owns”. The data excludes wages or income.

The methodology has been criticised as it means that a student with high debts, but with high future earning potential, for example, would be considered poor under the criteria used.

But Oxfam said even if the wealth of the poorest half of the world was recalculated to exclude people in net debt their combined wealth was still equal to that of just 128 billionaires.

Sources: Oxfam and BBC

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