In just three years, from 2011 to 2014, the bottom half of Americans lost almost half of their share of the nation's wealth, dropping from a 2.5% share to a 1.3% share.
Most of the top half lost ground, too. The 36 million upper middle class households just above the median (6th, 7th, and 8th deciles) dropped from a 13.4% share to an 11.9% share. Much of their portion went to the richest one percent.
This is big money. With total U.S. wealth of $84 trillion, the three-year change represents a transfer of wealth of over a trillion dollars from the bottom half of America to the richest 1%, and another trillion dollars from the upper middle class to the 1%.
The bottom half of America owned $1.5 trillion in 2011. Now their wealth is down to $1.1 trillion. Much of their wealth is in housing equity, which was depleted by the recession.
The richest Americans, on the other hand, took incomprehensible amounts of wealth from the rest of us, largely by being already rich, and by being heavily invested in the stock market. The following summary is based on the Credit Suisse Global Wealth Databook figures and reliable estimates of the makeup of the richest one percent, and on the fact that almost all the nation's wealth is in the form of private households and business assets:
----in 3 years the average household in the top 1% (just over a million households) increased its net worth by about $4.5 million.
----In 3 years the average household in the top .1% (just over 100,000 households) increased its net worth by about $18 million.
----In 3 years the average household in the top .01% (12,000 households) increased its net worth by about $180 million.
----In 3 years the average member of the Forbes 400 increased his/her net worth by about $2 billion
World-wide, the 1% wealth grew from $100 Trillion to $127 trillion in 3 years
A stunning 95 percent of the world's population lost a share of its wealth over the past three years. Almost all of the gain went to the world's richest 1%.
Again, the gains seem almost incomprehensible. The world's wealth grew from $224 trillion to $263 trillion in three years. The world's richest 1%, who owned a little under $100 trillion in 2011, now own almost $127 trillion. For every dollar they possessed just three years ago, they now have a dollar and a quarter.
From New York and LA and San Francisco to London and Kenya and Indonesia, the rich are pushing suffering populations out of the way to acquire land and build luxury homes. The "winner-take-all" attitude is breaking down society in the U.S. and around the world.
Taken from here