Pandemic increases the rate of super rich globally
The share of household wealth owned by billionaires has jumped to a record during the pandemic, with millionaires also coming from COVID-19 ahead, a study showed Tuesday.
The World Inequality Report, conducted by a network of social scientists, estimates that this year billionaires collectively own 3.5% of global household wealth, up from slightly more than 2%. at the start of the pandemic in early 2020.
Lead author Lucas Chancel said: “The COVID crisis has exacerbated inequality between the very rich and the rest of the population, noting that wealthy economies have taken advantage of the support. large financial aid to mitigate the sharp increase in poverty elsewhere.
The report draws on expert research and public domain data, with a preface written by economists Abhijit Banerjee and Esther Duflo, two of the three 2019 Nobel laureates on poverty. .
They write about what they call “the extreme concentration of economic power in the hands of a very small minority of the super-rich. “
The findings corroborate a wide range of existing studies, the “rich list” and other evidence pointing to increased health, social, gender and racial inequalities during the pandemic.
This year’s annual Forbes World Billionaires List includes 2,755 record-breaking billionaires with a combined worth of $13.1 trillion, up from $8 trillion last year.
The new report shows that a broader group of 520,000 adults who make up the richest 0.01% together see their share of global wealth hit 11% this year, up from 10% in the UK. last year.
Being in the top 0.01% means having household assets of at least 16.7 million euros (US$19 million), adjusted for purchasing power parity across currencies, it said. .
Analysts say some of the super-rich have benefited from the online shift in much of the world economy during the lockdown, while others have simply benefited from asset prices. rose as financial markets bet on the speed and shape of the global recovery.
The study also shows that while poverty increases sharply in countries with lower welfare coverage, large government support in the United States and Europe could mitigate at least some of the effects. the same effect on those with lower incomes there.
“This shows the importance of social nations in the fight against poverty,” said Chancel.
In other words, it welcomes this year’s agreement on a global minimum corporate tax rate of 15% as a possible milestone in efforts to prevent the “race to the bottom” since the mid-1980s has led to to halving the average corporate tax rate to about 24%.
However, they say the agreement is flawed because the 15% floor is lower than what middle-income earners pay in high-income countries and because it provides ambiguous arbitration and unclear for many affected companies.
(Reporting by Mark John; Editing by Alison Williams)