A friend shared this article with me, and I wanted to share an excerpt with you. I know we've all "heard it before," but I hope by bringing it up again, we'll all take the time to think about what this means for our personal spending/giving habits.
In fairness, Jacob pointed out that this particular study doesn't take into account issues of cost-of-living and buying power... but, it is still important to really pause and think about our own habits and our responsibility (yes, I mean responsibility) to the "other half" of the world.
Got $2,200? In this world, you're rich
The richest 2% of the world's population owns more than half of the world's household wealth.
You may believe you've heard this statistic before, but you haven't: For the first time, personal wealth -- not income -- has been measured around the world. The findings may be surprising, for what makes people "wealthy" across the world spectrum is a relatively low bar.
The research indicates that assets of just $2,200 per adult place a household in the top half of the world's wealthiest. To be among the richest 10% of adults in the world, just $61,000 in assets is needed. If you have more than $500,000, you're part of the richest 1%, the United Nations study says. Indeed, 37 million people now belong in that category.
Sure, you can now be proud that you're rich. But take a moment to think about it, and you'll probably come to realize that the meaning behind these numbers is harrowing. For if it takes just a couple of thousand dollars to qualify as rich in this world, imagine what it means to be poor.
Half the world, nearly 3 billion people, live on less than $2 a day. The three richest people in the world –- Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates, investor Warren Buffett and Mexican telecom mogul Carlos Slim Helú -- have more money than the poorest 48 nations combined.
The world's total wealth is valuated at $125 trillion. Although North America has only 6% of the world's adult population, it accounts for 34% of household wealth.