How rich are you?

Go to the global rich list to find out: Global Rich List. (You will just enter your annual income in a box and it will show you a graphic like this, and where you fit. Note: this is simply a link to a cool graphic, not an endorsement of the website.) (HT: Pastor Eugene Cho – An attitude of gratitude)


The Global Rich List calculations are based on figures from the World Bank Development Research Group. To calculate the most accurate position for each individual we assume that the world’s total population is 6 billion¹ and the average worldwide annual income is $5,000².Below is the yearly income in percentage for different income groups according to the World Bank’s figures³.

Percentage of world population Percentage of world income Yearly individual income Daily individual income
Bottom 10 percent 0.8 $400 $1,10
Bottom 20 percent 2.0 $500 $1,37
Bottom 50 percent 8.5 $850 $2,33
Bottom 75 percent 22.3 $1,487 $4,07
Bottom 85 percent 37.1 $2,182 $5,98
Top 10 percent 50.8 $25,400 $69,59
Top 5 percent 33.7 $33,700 $92,33
Top 1 percent 9.5 $47,500 $130,14

The world’s distribution of money can also be displayed as the chart below.


¹ 2003 world population Data Sheet of the Population Reference Bureau.
² Steven Mosher, president of the population research institute, CNN, October 13, 1999.
³ Milanovic, Branco. “True World Income Distribution, 1988 and 1993: First calculations based on household surveys alone”, World Bank Development Research Group, November 2000, page 30.

[Note: don’t take this post as an endorsement of the Global Rich List’s solutions.]

8 thoughts on “How rich are you?

  1. steph says:

    Yeah I knew I was rich. I earn $5000 US – 14.39% of the world’s richest. I have clean air, fresh running water, I can afford to pay for hot water and rent for my small one room flat, I have a garden to grow vegetables and I don’t eat much more than I can grow, beautiful birds and my beloved cat (who catches mice not birds). I can go to the doctor I don’t need a fridge or a washing machine but I don’t donate to websites (I’m not rich enough to have a credit card anyway) which seem to insinuate that I’d spend money on organic apples, own and DVD and a mobile phone and have the money to buy a second generation high definition TV. I never buy organic produce – it’s outrageously priced here and my garden and local market gardens are fairly organic anyway. I’ve never even had a video let alone a DVD, I don’t even know how to use a mobile phone let alone have one and my TV is fine even if it is too old to connect a DVD and a video. I only donate to charities I know. 🙂

  2. Ben says:

    Sounds great! We have a lot in common. I don’t have any land for a garden, but almost everything we eat is grown locally and is very good. We don’t own a TV either, but the computer will play DVDs. I do have the cheapest mobile phone, and it makes thinks easier when my wife needs to say, “Run home quick, Leila just cut her hand.”

    Maybe I need to move my disclaimer note about the link from the bottom to the top of the post?

  3. David Ker says:

    Almost exactly a year ago I wrote a post discussing these kinds of statistics:

    What also has to be calculated in is cost of living. There’s no question that people in developed nations are more prosperous. But in many cases they are actually less healthy due to poor eating, over eating, stress, food additives, etc.

    Still life expectancy statistics don’t lie and I think they are the ones to ponder. If we look at income only the gut reaction is to redistribute wealth which is the basis for our failed history of donor aid in Africa.

  4. steph says:

    If we didn’t have easy access to means of prolonging life in the western world, I believe our life expectancy would be less than undeveloped nations. I’d probably have died twenty three years ago when I had a cyst on my tibea caused by untreated shin splints from athletic. I probably got shin splints from doing alot of training bare foot on tarsealed surface (my mum couldn’t afford good shoes for a long time)…

    I saw your disclaimer Ben – I realise you weren’t endorsing the solutions. I think we are cleverer enough to realise why and how we should without the Global Rich List’s presumption pot. 🙂 I think every responsible parent who can afford it should have a dinky phone for just that purpose. I do have a notebook for the phd (and blog watching!) so I have to have a landline and I can’t afford a dinky phone too and I hate the thought of being so completely dependent on technology and I haven’t (sob) got any children. I can bike to the markets where everything is grown on site and picked daily. Alot is PYO. I don’t have time to grow and much as I’d like and I’m going back to the UK for a while anyway… flying, again … I do feel VERY bad about my carbon footprint!

  5. steph says:

    that’s presumptuous pot, I mean….

  6. Ben says:

    David, I do remember this post. Given the choice, I suspect that most people would happily take the higher income and much better standard of living – even if it does come at a higher cost. Wealthier people (including me obviously) simply have way more choices about their lives, and have much more disposable incomes. On the percentage of your post, what were they eating and which would you rather eat? So even if we are comparing apples and oranges, we are still talking about fruit verses no fruit.

    Steph, when you become a famous professor with all these published books, you’ll think back to those days when . . . it used to be arch strains for me. BTW, the plane will be flying anyway – whether or not you are on it. Hope that makes you feel better.

  7. N. T. Wrong says:

    Gaia will take her revenge.

    But David sent me here to make a request of you, Ben. I have been attempting to come up with a list of biblioblogs, but so far haven’t had much luck with finding African bibliobloggers. Would you be so kind as to provide any you know of?

  8. Ben says:

    Well, Steph, the bad Bishop gives you no sympathy.

    Bishop Wrong, I think you can see by my next post that I’m stumped as well. I’ve been encouraging a couple of my colleagues to start, but they are more wisely focused on finishing their dissertations. I’ll let you know if anyone responds.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.