Report: Richest 62 people control same wealth as poorest half of world’s population

An Indian woman sleeps outdoors in a shanty area in Hyderabad, India, Jan. 11, 2012. India has about 93 million slum dwellers. (Photo: Mahesh Kumar A./Associated Press)

(WRIC/ABC) — The richest 62 people in the world control more than half of the world’s money, according to a new report.

That means that those 62 people have the same collective wealth as the world’s poorest 3.6 billion people. The report released by Oxfam also says that the gap between rich and poor is growing wider.

Afghan refugee children stand at the main gate of their muddy house at a slum on the outskirts of Islamabad, Jan. 4, 2012. (Anjum Naveed/Associated Press)
Afghan refugee children stand at the main gate of their muddy house at a slum on the outskirts of Islamabad, Jan. 4, 2012. (Anjum Naveed/Associated Press)

The new report was published Sunday in the lead up to the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, which is scheduled to start on Wednesday.

“While such extreme inequality is bad for all of us, it’s the poorest among us who suffer the grimmest consequences,” President of Oxfam America Raymond C. Offenheiser said in a statement.

The report by Oxfam, an organization dedicated to fighting poverty, states that the poorest 50 percent of the world’s population is worth an estimated $1.76 trillion, which is also the estimated net worth of the richest 62 people in the world. Their report did not name names, but based their selection on reporting by Forbes.

According to Oxfam, this undated graph shows the wealth of the richest 62 individuals continues to grow, while that of the poorest half of the world stagnates. (Photo: Oxfam via ABC News)
According to Oxfam, this undated graph shows the wealth of the richest 62 individuals continues to grow, while that of the poorest half of the world stagnates. (Photo: Oxfam via ABC News)

One of the biggest areas of concern in the report is that the group of the ultra-wealthy are getting wealthier, making the gap between rich and poor more distinct.

Just five years ago, the majority of the world’s wealth was controlled by 388 people. That means that in those five years, the majority of the world’s wealth has been consolidated into the hands of less than one sixth of the number of people who used to control it.

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