Wealth Inequality Increased From 2000 to 2021

In most countries around the world, wealth inequality decreased from the beginning of the 21st century, but that trend was reversed in some places. The global financial crisis of 2007-08 had a negative effect on the attempt to close wealth gaps. After having fallen to a still-high 43% by 2008, the share of global wealth held by the wealthiest 1% increased again to nearly 46% in 2021, according to Credit Suisse’s annual Global Wealth report.

Wealth inequalities (and their dynamics) vary enormously from one country to another. Previous to the invasion of Ukraine, Russia was the country with the highest wealth concentration in the hands of the 1%, revealing a deep-reaching system of cronyism. Last year, 1% of the Russian population had still held nearly 60% of the national wealth. Since then, Russian billionaires’ fortunes have dwindled.

Other countries exhibiting big wealth inequality shares are Brazil, India and the United States. In China, wealth inequality has grown significantly from 2000 until 2021.

— source statista.com | Katharina Buchholz | 08/Dec/2022

Nullius in verba


Almost a million excess deaths in Britain due to decades of social inequality

Several reports published in Britain over the last few years attest to the fact that staggering levels of social inequality, fuelled by austerity policies, have claimed the lives of around a million people.

Earlier this month a paper led by the University of Glasgow and the Glasgow Centre for Population Health (GCPH), found as a “a conservative estimate” that there were 334,327 excess deaths beyond the expected number in England, Wales and Scotland over the eight-year period from 2012 and 2019. GCPH is a partnership between NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde, Glasgow City Council and the University of Glasgow.

The report by authors David Walsh, Ruth Dundas, Gerry McCartney, Marcia Gibson and Rosie Seaman, published in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health, notes, “Mortality rates across the UK stopped improving in the early 2010s, largely attributable to the “UK Government’s austerity policies which have cut both the income of the poorest and a

— source wsws.org | Robert Stevens | 16 Oct 2022

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1% Of India’s Richest Control 21% Of Country’s Wealth

The UN Development Programme (UNDP) released a sobering report on various indices of human development on September 8. The report, which describes the Human Development Index (HDI) for all countries, said COVID-19 has reversed decades of progress and has called for a “jolt” so countries can exit a “global policy paralysis”.

While the values of many indicators have slipped across the planet, India also dropped a rank, to stand at #132 on the list of countries ordered by HDI.

For the first time in 32 years (i.e. since the UNDP has been publishing the HDI), the value of the HDI has declined worldwide for two consecutive years. HDI measures a nation’s health, education and standard of living. “Human development has fallen back to its 2016 levels, reversing much of the progress towards the Sustainable Development Goals.” The HDIs of 90% of the world’s countries dropped either in 2020 or 2021.

— source thewire.in | 08/Sep/2022

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Richest 1% Now Owns Over 1/3 of US Wealth

The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO) on Tuesday published Trends in the Distribution of Family Wealth, 1989 to 2019, a report revealing that while the total real wealth of U.S. families tripled over those 30 years, the growth was dramatically unequal.

Families in the top 10% and in the top 1% of the distribution, in particular, saw their share of total wealth rise over the period,” the report notes. “In 2019, families in the top 10% of the distribution held 72% of total wealth, and families in the top 1% of the distribution held more than one-third; families in the bottom half of the distribution held only 2% of total wealth.

The CBO report also highlights the persistent racial wealth gap in the United States. In 2019, white families’ median wealth was 6.5 times that of Black families, 5.5 times that

— source commondreams.org | Sep 28, 2022

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Is This the End of ‘Socialism for the Rich’?

Last Thursday, the International Monetary Fund spooked the markets and surprised the commentariat by chiding the U.K. Conservative government for fiscal irresponsibility. The shock was palpable. For the IMF to criticize the government of a major Western economy was a little like the janitor scolding the landlord for putting the building’s assessed value at risk. That sense of a reversal of the usual order of things was all the sharper because, lest we forget, it was Britain’s Tories, under Margaret Thatcher’s steely leadership, who wrote the book on fiscal probity as the bedrock of neoliberalism. The IMF spent more than four decades inflicting that orthodoxy upon hapless governments the world over.
As if in a bid to amplify the stir it knew it would make, the IMF’s communiqué went so far as to censure the British government for introducing large tax cuts (now partially canceled after the IMF intervention), because they would mainly “benefit high-income earners” and “likely increase inequality.” Tories loyal to Britain’s beleaguered new prime minister, Liz Truss; America’s feistier Republicans; international economic pundits; and even some of my comrades on the left were briefly united by a common puzzlement: Since when did the IMF oppose greater inequality? One would be hard-pressed to identify a single IMF “structural adjustment program”—ask Argentina, South Korea, Ireland, or Greece (where I was once a finance minister who had to negotiate with the IMF) about the strings attached to its loans—that had not increased inequality. Had the fund’s hard-nosed

— source yanisvaroufakis.eu | Yanis Varoufakis | 10/10/2022

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The World’s Billionaire Population – 2021

Visualized: The World’s Billionaire Population

The world’s billionaires—only 3,311 individuals—represent almost $11.8 trillion in wealth. The global billionaire population continued to grow in 2021, increasing by 3%. Over the same period, billionaire wealth also increased by 18%.

This map uses data from the Wealth-X Billionaire Census to visualize where the world’s billionaires live and breaks down their collective wealth.

Billionaires by Region

We’ll begin by zooming out to look at how various continents and world regions rank in terms of their billionaire population.

Joyce Ma, 2022, The Worlds Billionaire Population 2021, Copyright © 2022 Visual Capitalist, accessed 15 September 2022, https://www.visualcapitalist.com/mapped-the-worlds-billionaire-population-by-country/

— source theanalysis.news | Sep 15, 2022

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While CEOs Make Millions and Workers Struggle, Union Surge Is Unsurprising

In just a little over six months, the number of Starbucks outlets where workers are represented by a union has spiked from zero to 165.

This pro-union wildfire is stunning. But should it be unexpected?

After more than two years on the frontlines of a pandemic, low-wage workers like those at Starbucks have seen modest increases in their wages. But in most cases, these raises have been overtaken by inflation. And meanwhile, paychecks for those at the top of the corporate ladder are soaring.

A recent Institute for Policy Studies report found that the average pay gap between CEOs and median workers at the 300 U.S. corporations with the lowest median worker pay hit 671 to 1 in 2021, up from 604 to 1 in 2020.

At Starbucks, the gap was even larger.

— source commondreams.org | Brian Wakamo | Jun 23, 2022

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Forbes, India and Pandora’s Pandemic Box

The ranks of Indian Dollar Billionaires swelled from 102 to 140 in 12 months, if the Forbes 2021 List is to be believed (and when it comes to billionaires and their wealth, Forbes is mostly to be believed). Their combined wealth, it notes, has “nearly doubled to $ 596 billion” in just the past year.

This means 140 individuals, or 0.000014 per cent of the population, had a cumulative worth equivalent to 22.7 per cent (or well over a fifth) of our Gross Domestic Product of $ 2.62 trillion, bringing, as they always do, that whole other meaning to the word ‘Gross’.

Most major Indian dailies carried the Forbes pronouncement in that approving tone they reserve for such feats – omitting to mention what the Oracle of Pelf says in a more upfront and honest way.

“Another Covid-19 wave,” says Forbes in the first paragraph of its report on this country, “is sweeping across

— source ruralindiaonline.org | P. Sainath | Apr 18, 2021

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