The richest 1 percent in the world will have amassed more than half the world’s wealth by 2016, according to a report released Monday by Oxfam. The 50% threshold is largely a symbolic one as, according to the British charity, the global 1 percent already owned 48 percent in 2014. The study also found this shocking—though at this point perhaps unsurprising—discrepancy in wealth: The richest 80 people in the world have collected the same amount of wealth—$1.9 trillion—as the 3.5 billion people at the bottom the global income ladder.
Oxfam’s findings were released ahead of the World Economic Forum’s Davos meeting this week, where the 1 percent nod gravely in conference rooms at a Swiss ski resort as they listen to each other talk about how horrible it must be to be in the 99 percent and that something really must be done. The Financial Times notes Oxfam’s report and general efforts “will add spice” to this year’s Davos proceedings, which is “already under pressure to explain the divergent economic outlook for different nations, and among different groups within them.”
“To join the band of 37 [million] adults in the top 1 per cent of global wealth holders would require assets of less than $800,000, although the average wealth of this group is significantly higher at $2.7 [million] per adult,” according to the FT.