The world’s 26 richest people own as much as the poorest 50%: Oxfam report.

The concentration of the world’s wealth has been highlighted by a report showing that the 26 richest billionaires on the planet own as many assets as the 3.8 billion people who make up the poorest half of the population.

In an annual report published to mark the start of the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, the development charity Oxfam said 2018 had been a year in which the rich had grown richer and the poor poorer.

It said the gap was holding back the fight against poverty, adding that a wealth tax on the 1% would raise an estimated $418bn per year – enough to educate every child not in school and provide healthcare that would prevent 3 million deaths.

Oxfam said the wealth of some 2,200 billionaires around the world had increased by $900bn in 2018 – or $2.5bn a day. The 12% increase contrasted with a fall of 11% in the wealth of the poorest half of the world’s population.

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