How much of the world's wealth belongs to the richest 1%?

Charity group Oxfam updated their research on inequality that shows that the world's richest 1% will control the wealth equal to 50% of the planet's total wealth in 2016.

The BBC prepared an infographic on the key findings of the report.

They began publishing the percentage in 2009 when it was 44%.

The 1% might seem like only the most powerful and successful people on the planet, but the BBC reports that individuals worth about R9 million are part of that 1%.

It suggests that unless all of us focus on the long term impact of inequality the consequences will not only be dire for the poor but everyone as the concentrated wealth will reduce the opportunity for growth. Low growth will see that gap continue to grow. Currently the world's richest 92 individuals have the wealth equivalent of the world's poorest 50%. As you can see below that ratio has been declining since 2010 when you needed the richest 388 individuals to match the wealth of approximately 3,5 billion people.

The number of billionaires that had the same wealth as the poorest 50% of the population over time.

The report was published as most of the world's Heads of State and most influential business people gather in Davos for the World Economic Forum. Oxfam International Executive Director Winnie Byanyima will co-chair the meeting and has called for urgent action to slow the wealth gap and create policies to reduce it.

While you might not be able to do something as an individual you could help by becoming more informed of the proposals and engaging with public representatives to create the policies to reverse the trend.

The increase in wealth of the richest individuals in the last year.

Redi hosted a discussion with Moazam Mahmood, Deputy Director in the research department with the International Labour Organisation to look at how the gap came about and what mechanisms might be used to address it.

EWN has a collection of stories relating to the World Economic Forum meetings taking place from 21 to 24 January 2015.


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