Russia, China, Japan and South Africa have seen the largest gaps between rich and poor emerge over the last 20 years, with only South Korea succeeding in reducing inequality amongst high-income countries. The figures suggest that by reducing inequality in Brazil and Mexico to levels seen in Indonesia (close to the G20 median), the number of people in poverty would fall by 90 per cent over the next decade.
The World Economic Forum last week listed stark inequality as top global risk.
The data also reveals that unlike the G20, in most low-income countries, inequality is falling, and levels of inequality are converging towards those of the G20. Perhaps time to revisit that idea of Millennium Consumption Goals? Or set up The Spirit Level reading groups in the Swiss mountains?