NEWS | The top 26 billionaires are as wealthy as 3.8 billion people CNN

NEWS | The top 26 billionaires are as wealthy as 3.8 billion people    CNN

NEWS | The top 26 billionaires are as wealthy as 3.8 billion people CNN Billionaires, who now number a record 2,208, have more wealth than ever before, according to an Oxfam International report published Monday. Since the global financial crisis a decade ago, the number of billionaires has nearly doubled. The annual study was released ahead of the yearly World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, which brings together some of the wealthiest and most influential people on Earth. The 106 page report is meant to call attention to the between rich and poor. The combined fortunes of the worlds 26 richest individuals reached dollar 1.4 trillion last year — the same amount as the total wealth of the 3.8 billion poorest people. Most of these mega wealthy are American, according to the Forbes list of billionaires used by Oxfam. The names include , Microsofts Bill Gates, Berkshire Hathaways Warren Buffett and Facebooks Mark Zuckerberg, who collectively are worth dollar 357 billion, according to Forbes. Oxfam recommends that nations tax wealth at fairer levels, raise rates on personal income and corporate taxes and eliminate tax avoidance by companies and the super rich. It also advocates providing universal free health care, education and other public services — and ensuring that women and girls also benefit. And it suggests investing in public services — including water, electricity and childcare — to free up womens time and limit the number of unpaid hours they work. The report echoes policy positions embraced by the newly empowered Democrats in the United States, who are advocating for similar reforms. “There is going to be a broader and increasingly energized public conversation in the US and globally on what a fair and effective tax system looks like that will be very different from today,” said Paul OBrien, Oxfam Americas vice president of policy and advocacy. Democratic Rep. Alexandria Ocasio Cortez, a freshman lawmaker from New York, has proposed to fund a climate change plan shes pushing called the “Green New Deal.” And a growing group of lawmakers, including Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont, are pushing for to expand the number of Americans with health insurance.

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