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Utopia Talk / Politics / Top 1% > the other 99%
Sun Jan 15 20:13:33
The top 1% captured nearly twice as much new wealth as the rest of the world over last two years

The world’s wealthiest residents have been getting far richer, far faster than everyone else over the past two years.

The top 1% have captured nearly twice as much new wealth as the rest of the world during that period, according to Oxfam’s annual inequality report, released Sunday. Their fortune soared by $26 trillion, while the bottom 99% only saw their net worth rise by $16 trillion.

And the wealth accumulation of the super-rich accelerated during the pandemic. Looking over the past decade, they netted just half of all the new wealth created, compared to two-thirds during the last few years.

The report, which draws on data compiled by Forbes, is timed to coincide with the kickoff of the annual World Economic Forum meeting in Davos, Switzerland, an elite gathering of some of the wealthiest people and world leaders.

Meanwhile, many of the less fortunate are struggling. Some 1.7 billion workers live in countries where inflation is outpacing wages. And poverty reduction likely stalled last year after the number of global poor skyrocketed in 2020.

“While ordinary people are making daily sacrifices on essentials like food, the super-rich have outdone even their wildest dreams,” said Gabriela Bucher, executive director of Oxfam International. “Just two years in, this decade is shaping up to be the best yet for billionaires — a roaring ’20s boom for the world’s richest.”

Though their riches have slipped somewhat over the past year, global billionaires are still far wealthier than they were at the start of the pandemic.

Their net worth totals $11.9 trillion, according to Oxfam. While that’s down nearly $2 trillion from late 2021, it’s still well above the $8.6 trillion billionaires had in March 2020.

The wealthy are benefiting from three trends, said Nabil Ahmed, Oxfam America’s director of economic justice.

At the start of the pandemic, global governments, particularly wealthier countries, poured trillions of dollars into their economies to prevent a collapse. That prompted stocks and other assets to soar in value.

“So much of that fresh cash ended up with the ultra-wealthy, who were able to ride this stock market surge, this asset boom,” Ahmed said. “And the guardrails of fair taxation weren’t in place.”

Also, many corporations have done well in recent years. Some 95 food and energy companies have more than doubled their profits in 2022, Oxfam said, as inflation sent prices soaring. Much of this money was paid out to shareholders.

In addition, the longer term trends of the unwinding of workers’ rights and greater market concentration is heightening inequality.

By contrast, global poverty increased greatly early in the pandemic. Though some progress in poverty reduction has been made since then, it is expected to have stalled in 2022, in part because of the war in Ukraine, which exacerbated high food and energy prices, according to World Bank data cited by Oxfam.

It’s the first time that extreme wealth and extreme poverty have increased simultaneously in 25 years, said Oxfam.

To counter this growing inequality, Oxfam is calling on governments to raise taxes on their wealthiest residents.

It proposes introducing one-time wealth tax and windfall taxes to end profiteering off global crises, as well as permanently increasing taxes on the richest 1% of residents to at least 60% of their income from labor and capital.

Oxfam believes the rates on the top 1% should be high enough to significantly reduce their numbers and wealth. The funds should then be redistributed.

“We do face an extreme crisis of wealth concentration,” Ahmed said. “And it’s important before all, I think, to recognize that it’s not inevitable. A strategic precondition to reining in extreme inequality is taxing the ultra-wealthy.”

The group, however, faces an uphill battle. Some 11 countries cut taxes on the rich during the pandemic. And efforts to hike levies on the wealthy fell apart in the US Congress in 2021, even though Democrats controlled both chambers and the White House.

Sun Jan 15 20:26:57
This is because they are billions of times smarter and work billions of times harder than normal people. Thank god for meritocracies!
Sun Jan 15 22:13:16
their brains are so gooder
Sam Adams
Sun Jan 15 22:43:26
Most of us are in the global top 1%.

Go us.
large member
Sun Jan 15 23:07:15
It is about equal to being a millionaire. 10% of your population is in the global top 1%.
Average Ameriacn
Mon Jan 16 02:23:19
This is the American dream. If you work hard enough it becomes reality.
Mon Jan 16 02:41:03

"Most of us are in the global top 1%."

Not quite. At least not according to this site.


But that has more to do with the amount of extreme poverty in the world than how well the typical American is doing.
Mon Jan 16 10:00:06

Gee, it's almost like the global shutdowns and lockdowns of 2020 might have had a disproportionate impact on lower-income workers who couldn't do their jobs remotely.

Millions of employees lost months of wages. Millions of lonely, depressed and destitute people became addicted to alcohol and drugs. Millions of patients missed important doctor appointments. Millions of children missed two vital years' worth of in-person education.

The Covid-era lockdowns and shutdowns were one of the worst decisions made in all of human history.
Mon Jan 16 11:28:12
What a surprise that money gaining interest and ROI grows while money spent on groceries does not
Mon Jan 16 14:12:57

"Gee, it's almost like the global shutdowns and lockdowns of 2020 might have had a disproportionate impact on lower-income workers ..."

Gee, it turns out that boom years disproportionately benefit the extremely wealthy too ... as do all years in between. It's almost as if owning everything, starting out with all the money, and having laws written to benefit you are a sort of magic potion for success.

This has jack to do with lockdowns.
Mon Jan 16 14:29:25

"What a surprise that money gaining interest and ROI grows while money spent on groceries does not"

Yes, and invested money gets taxed at a lower rate (when it's taxed at all) than money you have to work for.

Sam Adams
Mon Jan 16 15:33:15
Lower income taxes then. Easy solution.
Mon Jan 16 16:20:50


On a global scale, adults making an annual income greater than $124,720 make it into the 99th percentile, meaning they make more than 99% of the worldwide population.
Mon Jan 16 16:53:16

That number seems high.

Mon Jan 16 17:50:43
I'm a member of the 1%! Woot.
Mon Jan 16 18:39:41
"That number seems high."

So do I.
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