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Monday, December 10, 2018

FOR The First Time In History–– More Than Half The World Is Middle Class!

Bourgeoisie of the World, Unite!

By Oliver Wiseman
Human Progress

If life is what happens when you’re busy making other plans, then progress is what happens when we’re busy arguing about politics.

The most important piece of news in recent weeks has nothing to do with Brexit or Brett Kavanaugh. It didn’t make the front page and it did not cause social media to explode.

It was a milestone that represented not a great leap forward, but hundreds of millions of steps in the right direction.

I am referring to the fact that, as of last week, more than half of the world is middle class.

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.”

Read more at Human Progress.

(THL) Lost amid an endless litany of alarmist clickbait news media narratives, this may be the story of the century.

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