May 10, 2011

Thousands more millionaires in Canada


In case you were worried, the Financial Post reports that “new wealth” will continue to be generated in Canada and be one of the developed countries to “have some of the biggest concentrations of millionaire households by 2020.”    I’m feeling so relieved, aren’t you?

A Deloitte LLP report predicts that 2.4 million households in Canada will be in the millionaire club by 2020, an increase of 668,000 households from the present.  This will give us the eighth largest concentration of millionaires among the 25 countries surveyed. This should reassure all those who were concerned that we might move to reduce the growth in income inequality in this country.

And it gets better:  These uber-rich households will control $6.77 trillion by then, “nearly double the current level of $3.35 trillion.”   Aren’t you glad all that money will be in so few hands?

Sure makes it easier to know who we need to talk to about paying for all the social ills Canadian society will experience as a result of such an extreme level of income inequality.  For example, maybe we could get the cost of new prison construction off the public’s tab and just ask these guys to cover it, since the line between wealth concentration on this scale and higher rates of crime is pretty direct.

Oh, but that’s the route they’ve gone in the US — private prison corporations, generating — you guessed it — more private wealth for some already rich people.  Oops!  Forget that idea. 

Well, I don’t know about you, but I’m just so relieved that we aren’t losing the race to be the most unequal country on the planet.  To bring it home, here in BC the richest 10% of families with children gained almost $85,000 in average annual income over the past two decades, while the poorest 40% lost almost $7,000 per year.  That’s what I call growing the gap!

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