The 85 richest people in the world have as much as the 3.5 billion poorest: The Independent21 January 2014 | 02:55 | FOCUS News Agency
This "capture of opportunities" by the rich at the expense of the poor and middle classes has led to a situation where 70% of the world's population live in countries where inequality has increased since the 1980s and 1% of families own 46% of global wealth - almost 70tn British pounds.
Opinion polls in Spain, Brazil, India, South Africa, the US, UK and Netherlands found that a majority in each country believe that wealthy people exert too much influence. Concern was strongest in Spain, followed by Brazil and India and least marked in the Netherlands.
In the UK, some 67% agreed that "the rich have too much influence over where this country is headed" - 37% saying that they agreed "strongly" with the statement - against just 10% who disagreed, 2% of them strongly.
The WEF's own Global Risks report recently identified widening income disparities as one of the biggest threats to the world community.
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