Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Capitalism = Inequality

Some maybe becoming weary of this blog's repetition of statistics confirming the Marxist view that wealth increasingly concentrates into fewer hands.

The globe’s richest 1% have as much wealth as the bottom 50% – 3.8 billion people.

 The world’s richest people have seen their share of the globe’s total wealth increase from 42.5% at the height of the 2008 financial crisis to 50.1% – or $140tn (£106tn) , according to Credit Suisse’s global wealth report.


“The share of the top 1% has been on an upward path ever since [the crisis], passing the 2000 level in 2013 and achieving new peaks every year thereafter,” the annual report said. The bank said “global wealth inequality has certainly been high and rising in the post-crisis period”.



The increase in wealth among the already very rich led to the creation of 2.3 million new dollar millionaires over the past year, taking the total to 36 million. “The number of millionaires, which fell in 2008, recovered fast after the financial crisis, and is now nearly three times the 2000 figure,” Credit Suisse said.
These millionaires – who account for less than 0.5% of the world’s population – control 46% of total global wealth that now stands at $280tn.
The 36 million people with at least $1m of wealth are collectively worth $128.7tn. More than two-fifths of the world’s millionaires live in the US, followed by Japan with 7% and the UK with 6%.

Since the Brexit vote meant the total number of dollar millionaires in the UK fell by 34,000 to 2.19 million. Just over half of the UK’s 51 million adults have wealth in excess of $100,000. The mean average wealth of a UK adult is $278,038, but the median is $102,641.

“In the UK, the wealthiest 1% have seen their share increase to nearly a quarter of all the country’s wealth, while the poorest half have less than 5%,” Oxfam’s head of advocacy, Katy Chakrabortty, said. “This divide matters hugely at a time when millions of people across the UK face a daily struggle to make ends meet and the numbers living in poverty are the highest for almost 20 years.

While the global population of millionaires has grown considerably, the number of ultra-high net worth individuals (UHNWIs) – those with a net worth of $50m or more – has increased even faster. “The number of millionaires has increased by 170% [since 2000], while the number of UHNWIs has risen five-fold, making them by far the fastest-growing group of wealth-holders,” the report said. Most of the new UHNWIs have been created in the US, but 22% come from emerging economies, notably China.
The world’s 3.5 billion poorest adults each have assets of less than $10,000 (£7,600). Collectively these people, who account for 70% of the world’s working age population, account for just 2.7% of global wealth.
The poor are mostly found in developing countries, with more than 90% of adults in India and Africa having less than $10,000. “In some low-income countries in Africa, the percentage of the population in this wealth group is close to 100%,” the report said. “For many residents of low-income countries, life membership of the base tier is the norm rather than the exception.”

The biggest losers, the report says, are young people who should not expect to become as rich as their parents. “Those with low wealth tend to be disproportionately found among the younger age groups, who have had little chance to accumulate assets,” Urs Rohner, Credit Suisse’s chairman, said. “But we find that millennials face particularly challenging circumstances.” Millennials have been dealt a series of blows including high unemployment, tighter mortgage rules, increased income inequality and reduced pensions. “With baby boomers occupying most of the top jobs and much of the housing, millennials are doing less well than their parents at the same age, especially in relation to income, home ownership and other dimensions of well-being assessed in this report.” He said that millennials are much more educated than their parents. But he added: “We expect only a minority of high achievers and those in high demand sectors such as technology or finance to effectively overcome the ‘millennial disadvantage’.”



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