Globally the incomes of the top 1% have increased 60% in twenty years. The growth in income for the 0.01% has been even greater. Following the financial crisis, the process has accelerated, with the top 1% further increasing their share of income. The luxury goods market has registered double digit growth every year since the crisis hit. Source: Milanovic, Branko, 2012. "Global income inequality by the numbers : in history and now --an overview-" Policy Research Working Paper Series 6259, The World Bank.
Distribution of Wealth Across Individuals: Inequality Remains High
To determine how global wealth is distributed across households and individuals – rather than regions or countries – we combine our data on the level of household wealth across countries with information on the pattern of wealth distribution within countries. Our estimates for mid-2013 indicate that once debts have been subtracted, an adult requires just 4,000 US dollars in assets to be in the wealthiest half of world citizens. However, a person needs at least 75,000 US dollars to be a member of the top 10 percent of global wealth holders, and 753,000 US dollars to belong to the top 1 percent. Taken together, the bottom half of the global population own less than 1 percent of total wealth. In sharp contrast, the richest 10 percent hold 86 percent of the world’s wealth, and the top 1 percent alone account for 46 percent of global assets.
This working paper: (i) provides an overview of global, regional and national income inequalities based on the latest distribution data from the World Bank, UNU-WIDER and Eurostat; (ii) discusses the negative implications of rising income inequality for development; (iii) calls for placing equity at the center of development in the context of the United Nations development agenda; (iv) describes the likelihood of inequalities being exacerbated during the global economic crisis; (v) advocates for urgent policy changes at national and international levels to ensure a “Recovery for All”; and, (vi) to serve as a general reference source,
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