85 people are richer than half of world’s population

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Money makes the world go round, but real money seems to spin to a scant few.

The 85 richest people on the planet have as much money as the world’s poorest half.

Yup, 85 individuals control $1.7 trillion, as much as 3.5 billion of the globe’s population.

But is that as bad as it sounds?

Steven Craig, Ph.D., Professor of Economics at the University of Houston explained, “The richest of those 3.5 billion is about at the U.S. poverty line, give or take something, and so it’s a dramatic way to present the result that the richest  families have as much money as this whole bottom half of the population.”

Oxfam, a development charity, argues that growing inequality is skewed by the wealthy who force the political process to change economic rules in their favor.

Certainly some of the wealthy give back, while so many simply get wealthier.

On the other hand, the world`s poor are still better off than before.

“The bottom half of the population of the world is much better off than it was before.  So if you think about it from 50 years ago, those people are now in the world economy, where most of them were not,” according to Professor Craig.

Still, it’s a little scary that so few control so much.