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Commenting on Oxfam's inequality report, Head of Research at the Adam Smith Institute, Ben Southwood, said:
Oxfam's wealth statistics do not make sense. According to their methodology, Michael Jackson was one of the poorest people in the world, and Ivy League graduates just starting their jobs at Goldman Sachs are in the direst poverty.
It just doesn't make sense to look at net wealth without considering the incomes people might be expected to earn.
What's more, it's not clear why we should care all that much about rising global wealth inequality, when it has come with unprecedented declines in global poverty. Hundreds of millions have escaped penury in India and China, but it is not just there where global living standards have been rising—African poverty fell 38% between 1990 and 2011.
Notes to editors:
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The Adam Smith Institute is an independent libertarian think tank based in London. It advocates classically liberal public policies to create a richer, freer world.