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Millionaires and Billionaires

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World Wealth distribution in Trillion Dollars

$200 Trillion World Wealth distribution in Dollars

Recently I noticed an article that stated ‘millionaires and billionaires control nearly 40% of the world’s wealth , while making up less than 1 percent of its population’. Then CTV News reported that Oxfam’s new report states the richest 85 people on the planet have as much wealth as half the world’s population. The second statement by Oxfam is a little dubious considering there are approximately 1146 billionaires on the planet with  combined wealth of $5.4 trillion (Forbes list of billionaires), hardly more wealth than 50% of the worlds poorest population. But, even if these statements are only partially correct there is no question that a large part of the world population is doing poorly with little opportunity. So, is being poor the fault of the millionaires and billionaires, ruling governments or just bad luck? If the wealthy had their money redistributed by government’s, would it solve the problems of the poor or would the world just sink into hyper poverty?

Finding answers to the above questions can get a little tricky. To help understand were the worlds cash is, its interesting to note that  most of the wealth of the world is concentrated in  3 areas. Out of the $200+ trillion circulating  approximately 83% is in Asia (29.4%), Europe (26.5%) and North America (26.5%). The 3 areas with the least money circulating and make up for 30% of the world’s population is Africa (1.52%), Middle East (5%) and South America (6.5%), all areas with low incomes. Another point to note from the “World Wealth Report” as of 2008, is 10 million people around the globe were worth more than 1 million U.S. dollars when the value of their main homes were excluded. This combined with the 1146 billionaires make up a worth of $37.2 trillion or less than 20% of the world’s wealth, not 40% that the media would like you to believe.

Looking at the pie chart above we can see that the world wealth is split with 56% going to households and pensions while the balance is going toward banks and business. This seems to be a reasonable split since business are the ones that are creating the jobs and wealth for the rest of us. We can hardly expect to take all the money for Health care, education etc. and expect someone to create jobs for us with little or no money. After all jobs are just as important as education and healthcare.

Looking at all these figures I find it unlikely that redistributing  the $37 trillion away from the millionaires and billionaires would make a dent in helping the poor around the world. It wouldn’t even pay off the world debt of 52 trillion. All the billionaires cash wouldn’t began to pay off the US $17 trillion debt. In fact it would take money away from people who can create jobs and have the knowhow to create prosperity ,leaving the prosperous areas broke. The areas that have little wealth are the result of poor governments, dictators and limited human rights, not the result of the wealthy hording their money. Redistributing wealth to these countries will do nothing to help the poor. What will help is a change in mindset of these hideous regimes in the Middle East, Africa and South America to help educate the population to create jobs and prosperity. This is where the wealthy areas should rally their resources.

I have to say that I am getting tired of these articles and left leaning liberal ideas that have their hidden meaning suggesting that successful people should be embarrassed because they are prosperous. The billionaires around the world have only a small piece of the pie of the worlds wealth but contribute enormously to everyone prosperity.

Its time for the news media and left leaning politicians to stop kicking prosperity in the face and let the wealthy do what they do best, create wealth for all of us.

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Written by Ken McGregor

January 21, 2014 at 5:44 pm

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