Fortunes increased at a rate of $1.6 billion a day
Wealthy financial elites have benefited amid the economic turmoil of the last twelve months, doubling their fortunes to $1.9 trillion, according to a report released Monday.
As supply chain issues leave some industries on the brink of collapse, the world’s ten richest men are increasing their fortunes at a rate of $1.6 billion a day.
According to a confederation of charities that focus on alleviating poverty around the globe, Oxfam said elites’ wealth grew more throughout the pandemic more than the last 14 years.
Oxfam’s latest report, Inequality Kills, was released as global business leaders met virtually this week for World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, Switzerland.
“We have a situation where ten men hold more wealth than that of two-thirds of humanity,” Chief executive of Oxfam Australia, Lyn Morgain, told Australia’s ABC news outlet.
“Not only that, but that bottom 40 percent are hanging on by a thread,” she added.
Oxfam International Executive Director Gabriela Bucher said, “the pandemic has been a billionaire bonanza.”
“When governments did the rescue packages and pumped trillions into the economy and to financial markets in order to support the economy for all, what happened is a lot of it went into the pockets of the billionaires,” Bucher added.
The report observes “unprecedented” levels of global inequality as the divide between “us and them,” the “haves and have not,” becomes more pronounced.
The charity ads the 20 new “pandemic billionaires” have been created in Asia thanks to the international response to coronavirus.
Forbes listed the world’s ten richest men as:
- Tesla and SpaceX chief Elon Musk
- Amazon’s Jeff Bezos
- Google founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin
- Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg
- Former Microsoft CEOs Bill Gates and Steve Ballmer
- Former Oracle CEO Larry Ellison
- U.S. investor Warren Buffet
- Head of the French luxury group LVMH, Bernard Arnault
The report suggests that taxing the money that billionaires have made could be used to “clawback” the huge gains.
“A 99% one-off windfall tax on the Covid-19 wealth gains of the ten richest men alone would generate $812bn,” the report said.
“These resources could pay to make enough vaccines for the entire world and fill financing gaps in climate measures, universal health and social protection, and efforts to address gender-based violence in over 80 countries,” it added.
Despite the report’s solution of ‘clawing back’ unpaid tax, Elon Musk will pay $11 billion in taxes this year, making it the largest tax bill of any American in history, which they failed to note.
For those wondering, I will pay over $11 billion in taxes this year
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) December 20, 2021
Musk was recently attacked by Sen. Elizabeth Warren for being a “freeloader.”
“Let’s change the rigged tax code so The Person of the Year will actually pay taxes and stop freeloading off everyone else,” Warren tweeted.
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