New Report Says Rich Are Richer And Spending More Than Ever
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Surprise, plebians: The rich are getting richer.
A new report released this week by the elitist property management firm Knight Frank confirms the ranks of the rich are expanding, and they're spending their money with the gilded abandon so characteristic of our era.
The report notes the number of "ultra-wealthy" individuals (those earning over $30 million) across the globe rose by 59% over the last decade, and the number of billionaires increased by 80%. 5,000 new individuals were added to the roster of the "ultra-wealthy" in the last year alone.
75 percent of wealthy respondents surveyed by Knight Frank said their assets increased in the last year, while less than 5 percent said their personal wealth had declined.
The report optimistically forecasts an increase in the population of billionaires across the globe. From the New York Times summary of the report:
While the United States, Japan and Germany are still home to more millionaires and billionaires than other countries, wealth is growing rapidly in the Middle East, Latin America, Australasia and Africa. By 2023, China is expected to have 322 billionaires, more than Britain, Russia, France and Switzerland combined, according to the report. The United States is forecast to have 503 billionaires in 2023, up from the current 417, according to the report.
What effect will the rising fortunes of the wealthy have on American society? The right claims that a rising economy rises in unison, but as the rich have emerged from the financial crisis even wealthier than before, wages have stagnated for everyone else and the ranks of the poor have grown.
It will take more than newly-minted millionaires to build a society that is fair and just for all.