85 Richest People Have as Much Money as Poorest Half

And wealthiest 1% of population has 46% of world's wealth: Oxfam report

By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff

Posted Jan 20, 2014 7:23 AM CST

(Newser) – Here's a shocking detail from a new Oxfam report: The poorest half of the entire global population, comprised of 3.5 billion people, has as much money as the wealthiest 85 people around the world. How much is that, exactly? More than $1.6 trillion. And if you look at the richest 1% of the global population, they have 65 times more money than the poorest 50%. That number: $110 trillion, NBC News reports; that's 46% of the world's total wealth, USA Today notes. The Oxfam report comes as the World Economic Forum starts in Davos, and is meant to highlight growing income inequality, the Guardian reports.

Oxfam blames the growing gap on a "power grab" by the world's richest, who use their influence to make sure politicians promote economic policies that help them get even richer. "Widening inequality is creating a vicious circle where wealth and power are increasingly concentrated in the hands of a few, leaving the rest of us to fight over crumbs from the top table," says the Oxfam executive director, who will attend the World Economic Forum ... which, in case you forgot, is held in an exclusive ski resort where attendees, many of whom will arrive on private jets, attend ritzy parties as well as meetings. Oxfam wants attendees to, among other things, pledge not to use their wealth for political purposes, not to dodge taxes, and to demand a living wage for workers.

  (Shutterstock)
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