Global inequality may be much worse than we think | Jason Hickel

It’s familiar news by now. Oxfam’s figures have gone viral: the richest 1% now have more wealth than the rest of the world’s population combined. Global inequality is worse than at any time since the 19th century.For most people, this is all they know about global inequality. But Oxfam’s wealth figures don’t quite tell the whole story. What about income inequality? And – more importantly – what about inequalities between countries? If we expand our view beyond the usual metrics, we can learn a lot more about how unequal our world has become.

The first thing to say about Oxfam’s numbers is that they present a very conservative picture. Given that the rich hide so much of their wealth in tax havens and secrecy jurisdictions, it is impossible to know how much they really have. Recent estimates suggest that up to $32tn is stored away in tax havens – around one sixth of the world’s total private wealth. If we were to add that to Oxfam’s metrics, inequality would look much, much worse.

-Jason Hickel

Source: Global inequality may be much worse than we think | Global Development Professionals Network | The Guardian

We’re just starting to pull on the thread of hidden wealth. It’s not likely that we’ll ever uncover it all, but if we ever get enough of the picture to have a rough approximation that approaches reality, I’m guessing our current estimates will pale in comparison.

The US Government Loses As Much As $111 Billion Annually Due to Corporate Tax Dodging –

The report estimates that the US loses $111 billion a year and that developing countries lose $100 billion annually due to corporate tax dodging. From 2008-2014, according to the report, the top 50 American corporations reported $4 trillion in profits and paid $1 trillion in taxes globally, with only $412 billion of that going to the federal US government. At the same time, they received $11.2 trillion from the government “in the form of loans, loan guarantees, and bailout assistance,” in addition to $337 billion in tax breaks.

The use of tax havens allowed the surveyed firms to reduce their overall effective tax rate to 26.5 percent on average, 8.5 percent lower than the statutory rate of 35 percent. For each dollar they paid in federal taxes, according to the report, the top 50 US firms received $27 in federal support.