The US is the richest country in the world, but the gap between its wealthy residents and the rest of the world is widening.
According to the latest data from the World Bank, the US is home to more wealth than its neighbours to the south.
“Wealth gaps are widening,” says Dr Barbara Stein, professor of public policy at the University of California, San Diego.
Dr Stein believes the gap will become larger in coming decades. “
This is really a sign of the times.”
Dr Stein believes the gap will become larger in coming decades.
In the US, the wealth gap between the top 1 per cent of earners and the poorest fifth has grown from $1.3tn in 2005 to $1trn in 2021.
While it remains at the same level in most other countries, it has grown at an alarming rate in the US.
“I think we are approaching the tipping point where it’s going to get really bad,” she says.
“It’s going up from a situation that we think was pretty good.”
In some cases, the gap has widened to as much as 40 per cent in some countries.
“That means that the wealth of the richest 10 per cent now makes up almost a quarter of the GDP,” Dr Stein says.
Dr Stein thinks this will be exacerbated by automation.
“If we don’t address the challenges of automation, the productivity gap will widen even further.”
Dr Barbara also thinks the US economy will be in a precarious position if wages do not rise faster than productivity.
“Wages are going to have to rise by a huge amount, and that means that wages are going up at a much slower rate than productivity growth,” she explains.
“And it’s not only going to be at a slower rate, it’s also going to become harder to pay for that, because the US will be stuck in a debt trap.”
The wealth gap also widened for the richest 1 per% in 2021, and by 2024.
“So, we’re in a very dangerous situation,” Dr Barbara adds.
“In the next 20 years, the richest US families are going a long way ahead.”
The US also has a large population that is not affected by the growing wealth gap.
According for the OECD, the number of millionaires has increased by an average of more than a million each year since 2009.
“There are a lot of people who have never owned a home in the United States,” Dr Barry says.
He believes that is largely because of the housing bubble that burst in 2008, and the subsequent recession that ensued.
And there’s a big, large number of people that are moving out of the US.” “
As a result, if they’re going to make a lot, they’re probably going to move to other places.
And there’s a big, large number of people that are moving out of the US.”
Dr Barry argues that, as the population ages, the growing economic disparity could have a detrimental effect on the health of the country’s elderly population.
“When we look at the future, it looks like our health is going to deteriorate in a way that it hasn’t deteriorated in the past,” he says.
The US’s current wealth gap is partly due to the fact that the US has no state retirement system.
As a result there is a huge gap between those with money to invest and those who don’t.
“But it is also because there are a number of very well educated people in the country,” Dr Walters adds.
In a report last year, the National Bureau of Economic Research, a US research organisation, estimated that if the US had a universal pension system, it would cost the country $1tn a year.
Dr Walters believes that the current financial system will be inadequate to handle the ageing population, and is also worried that the financial system could not provide enough support for the poor.
“Without the government’s support, we are going have a massive shortfall in what people are able to spend and how much they’re able to save,” he explains. If we don