Tag: Wealth

Is Covid bankrupting Trump? – UnHerd

Screenshot_2020-04-03 Is Covid bankrupting Trump - UnHerd.pngTrump, so it goes, was too big to fail. Well here we go again. According to the Wall St Journal: “More than 500 staff at Trump properties in New York, Washington, Las Vegas and Florida have been laid off or furloughed, say people familiar with the matter and federal disclosures. Several Trump hotels have been closed, and those still running have experienced dwindling occupancies. One day in March, the family’s flagship Trump International Hotel in Washington had just 11 guests in its 263 rooms, according to an employee.”

via Is Covid bankrupting Trump? – UnHerd

What the Bureau of Statistics didn’t highlight: our continuing upward redistribution of wealth – Michael West

What the Bureau of Statistics didn’t highlight: our continuing upward redistribution of wealth

We really need to know

Statistics are windows on change. Despite our criticisms, the bureau’s biennial income and wealth survey gives us the best view of inequality we’ve got, but large areas remain foggy.

In research for the Evatt Foundation, we have used data from the Bureau of Statistics, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development and national accounts to estimate that, for the first time in more than half a century, the richest 10% of households own more than half of Australia’s private wealth.


Read more: There’s a reason you’re feeling no better off than 10 years ago. Here’s what HILDA says about well-being


The Evatt Foundation’s results seem to stand up well, but governments should really be producing better data themselves.

Inequality and its harmful effects on economic output and stability are growing. We owe it to ourselves to find out by how much.

via What the Bureau of Statistics didn’t highlight: our continuing upward redistribution of wealth – Michael West

Report: World’s Richest Got 20% Richer in 2017

A report published recently by Swiss bank UBS shows the world’s wealthiest are now worth $9.1 trillion, enough to spend $1 million per day for 30,000 years.

In 2017, more than 2,000 billionaires around the world became even wealthier, pushing their collective fortunes to historic levels. According to a report recently published by Swiss bank UBS and accountants PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), no other year in recorded history, including the industrial revolution and the Gilded Age, has seen such a massive increase in wealth of the global elite.

Just over 2,150 people have seen their wealth increase by 20 percent, many doing so through various forms of inheritance and asset transfers.

via Report: World’s Richest Got 20% Richer in 2017

At the Heart of Global Woes, 157 of World’s 200 Richest Entities Are Now Corporations, Not Governments

From massive inequality to the climate crisis, these powerful corporations “are able to demand that governments do their bidding”

via At the Heart of Global Woes, 157 of World’s 200 Richest Entities Are Now Corporations, Not Governments

Day to Day Politics: Ideology versus the Common Good – » The Australian Independent Media Network

Did you know that 10 per cent of Australians now hold more wealth than the other 90 per cent combined? Let me put it another way. The richest one per cent of Australians are collectively wealthier than the poorest 60 per cent. Or try this 62 mega-rich people across the globe now hold as much wealth as 3.6 billion of the world’s poorest. Try this. Australia’s richest person was worth $18 billion, equaling the wealth held by the poorest 10 per cent of Aussies.Here’s some more from an Oxfam report titled “An Economy for the 1%“: The world’s richest 1% now hold more wealth than the rest of the planet. The richest 10 per cent of Australians hold more wealth than the other 90 per cent combined. The gap between Australia’s richest and poorest is accelerating. In 2015, the wealth of Australia’s richest 1% outstripped the poorest 60%. Australia’s richest person is worth more than all of the wealth held by the poorest 10 per cent of Australians. Dr Szoke from Oxfam, the reports writer, said Australia must be part of a global solution to a global problem, and a renewed international focus on corporate tax avoidance would be critical to efforts to address wealth inequality.So isn’t it odd that the Turnbull Government is contemplating increasing the rate of its consumer tax in order to give the same companies a reduction in the amount of tax they pay. Figure that out.

Source: Day to Day Politics: Ideology versus the Common Good – » The Australian Independent Media Network

From between the census lines emerges a picture of the great wealth divide | Nicholas Biddle and Francis Markham | Australia news | The Guardian

If income inequality feeds disparities across generations, policies should encourage different social classes to share neighbourhoods and regions

Source: From between the census lines emerges a picture of the great wealth divide | Nicholas Biddle and Francis Markham | Australia news | The Guardian

Eight men share fortune of 3.6 billion people – PravdaReport

In 2015, Bill Gates’ fortune was evaluated at $83.6 billion. Mexican telecommunications tycoon has suffered largest losses among the billionaires, whose fortunes were included on the list

Source: Eight men share fortune of 3.6 billion people – PravdaReport

Eight men own same wealth as poorest half of world’s population, Oxfam reveals – ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

Just eight men own the same amount of wealth as the poorest half of the world’s population, a new Oxfam report reveals.

Source: Eight men own same wealth as poorest half of world’s population, Oxfam reveals – ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

The age of loneliness is killing us. A world of increasing mental ill health is our ISIS

Man sitting on a bench under a tree

So what’s the point? What do we gain from this war of all against all? Competition drives growth, but growth no longer makes us wealthier. Figures published this week show that, while the income of company directors has risen by more than a fifth, wages for the workforce as a whole have fallen in real terms over the past year. The bosses earn – sorry, I mean take – 120 times more than the average full-time worker. (In 2000, it was 47 times). And even if competition did make us richer, it would make us no happier, as the satisfaction derived from a rise in income would be undermined by the aspirational impacts of competition.

The top 1% own 48% of global wealth, but even they aren’t happy. A survey by Boston College of people with an average net worth of $78m found that they too were assailed by anxiety, dissatisfaction and loneliness. Many of them reported feeling financially insecure: to reach safe ground, they believed, they would need, on average, about 25% more money. (And if they got it? They’d doubtless need another 25%). One respondent said he wouldn’t get there until he had $1bn in the bank.

For this, we have ripped the natural world apart, degraded our conditions of life, surrendered our freedoms and prospects of contentment to a compulsive, atomising, joyless hedonism, in which, having consumed all else, we start to prey upon ourselves. For this, we have destroyed the essence of humanity: our connectedness.

Yes, there are palliatives, clever and delightful schemes like Men in Sheds and Walking Football developed by charities for isolated older people. But if we are to break this cycle and come together once more, we must confront the world-eating, flesh-eating system into which we have been forced.

Hobbes’s pre-social condition was a myth. But we are entering a post-social condition our ancestors would have believed impossible. Our lives are becoming nasty, brutish and long.

So where is the crisis Mr Abbott???

Illustration by John Shakespeare (image from smh.com.au)Australia is still the richest nation . . . But don’t celebrate just yet

Australia remains the richest country in the world according to the annual wealth report from Credit Suisse released this week. The ascendancy Australia gained during the global financial crisis (GFC) has been easily maintained, although fortunes have varied widely elsewhere. Quite the opposite according to Tony and Joe.

The median wealth of Aussie adults increased from US$219,500 last year to $225,300. Belgium is second, well back on $173,000. Then follow Italy, France, the UK, Switzerland, Japan and Singapore.

Australia has not always been the richest nation. It topped the table during the global financial crisis, thus bolstering the view of Joseph Stiglitz, Tim Harcourt and others that Australia handled the GFC particularly well.

In 2008, Australia ranked sixth in the world on median wealth behind Luxembourg, Iceland, Belgium, Italy and France. Through 2009, as the global financial crisis devastated most developed economies, Australia rose to second behind clear leader Luxembourg, with Belgium a close third. The others fell well back.

By 2010, Australia was within a fraction of a percentage point of Luxembourg, which it overtook to lead the world in 2011. Through 2012 Australia moved further ahead, leading Luxembourg, Japan, Italy, Belgium and the UK. By 2013 Australia’s median wealth had rocketed to US$219,500 per adult, leaving Luxembourg, France, Italy, the UK and Norway well behind.

Over the 14 years since the turn of the century, Credit Suisse calculates household wealth in Australia grew at an average annual rate of 11%, despite the GFC.