Wealthiest 1% Globally Will Possess More Than Half Of Total Global Wealth In 2016

The very rich are getting very richer.

The wealthiest 1% of the world’s population will own more than half of total global wealth next year, according to projections released Monday by Oxfam International, the antipoverty advocacy group.

And the richest 80 people in the world alone now possess more combined riches than do the poorest half of the world’s population, Oxfam reported, citing Credit Suisse CSGN.VX +1.23% and Forbes data.

“Global wealth is becoming increasing(ly) concentrated among a small wealthy elite,” the Oxfam report said.

In 2010, it would have taken the combined riches of the 388 top billionaires to equal the combined assets of the bottom 50% of the planet. But the billionaires’ assets have appreciated so quickly since then, and the total value of the poor’s resources has dropped so precipitously, that last year it took just the top 80 billionaires to equal the wealth of the bottom 3.5 billion people on the planet, Oxfam said.

The wealthiest 80 people have a combined net worth of $1.9 trillion, up from $1.3 trillion in 2010, with the bulk of their fortunes coming from the financial, pharmaceutical and health care industries. More than a billion people live on less than $1.25 a day, Oxfam said.

The richest 20% of the population together hold 94.5% of the world’s wealth, Oxfam said. The poorest 80% of the world’s population share just 5.5%.

“It is time our leaders took on the powerful vested interests that stand in the way of a fairer and more prosperous world,” Winnie Byanyima, Oxfam’s executive director, said in a written statement accompanying the report.



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