October 18, 2018

IT'S THE eND OF hISTORY AND WE ALL FEEL FINE:

Bourgeoisie of the World, Unite! (Oliver Wiseman, 10/16/18, Human Progress)

Homi Kharas and Kristofer Hamel, two of the researchers behind the work, done under the auspices of the World Data Lab, characterise the global middle class as having enough discretionary income to buy consumer durables like fridges and motorcycles; being able to spend money on entertainment like trips to the cinema; and being fairly confident that they can weather an economic shock without falling back into extreme poverty.

The more precise measure they use is earnings of between $11 and $110 per day on a 2011 purchasing power parity basis.

The researchers divide the world's population into four groups. They estimate that 600 million people are poor (living on under $1.90 per day); 3.2 billion people are financially vulnerable (living on between $1.90 and $11 per day); 3.6 billion people meet their definition of middle class and 200 million people are rich (living on more than $110 per day).

Explaining the significance of what they are describing, Kharas and Hamel do not mince their words: "For the first time since agriculture-based civilization began 10,000 years ago, the majority of humankind is no longer poor or vulnerable to falling into poverty."

Posted by at October 18, 2018 4:11 AM

  

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