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What Is the Median Income Worldwide?

The median income worldwide — the amount that is dead middle between the least and the highest amounts — is $850 US Dollars (USD). People who have incomes of $41,000 USD are in the top 3% in terms of the richest people in the world. If the trillion dollar worldwide economy were evenly split up between Earth's 6.7 billion people, the average income would be $7,000 USD.


Show Me The Money:

  • Countries that have average incomes of about $7,000 USD include Chile and Mexico.

  • The country with the highest median income is Switzerland: $60,288 USD. The U.S. median income is $50,233 USD.

  • The country with the highest gross national income per capita is Luxembourg: $63,978 USD; the U.S. gross national income per capita is $47,320 USD.

  • Three billion people in the world live on less than $2 USD per day.

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More Info: Global Rich List; Boston.com; OECD Factbook; Wikipedia

Discuss this Article

anon929304
Post 12

@anon303565: Giving more is not resolving anything. We have been giving billions for decades and have solved nothing. The way to do it is copying what the successful countries have done. 1 - Stop corruption, 2 - Establish a free market economy, 3 - Make sure they get a good education system and 4 - Leave them alone.

anon357388
Post 11

A mandatory 24-hour work week worldwide would prevent the inequality from getting worse. The basic problem is that there is an over-supply of labor, which leads in completion among workers, which drives down the wages.

Instead, we need to restrict the supply of labor until employers start competing for workers by bidding up the wages again.

With 7 billion people on the planet and current productivity levels, a reduction in working hours is the only long-term, environmentally sustainable solution.

anon357247
Post 10

We really need to start thinking more about the people who are really in need. So many people don't have enough food. We should all try to find a way to donate to people in need, especially grainy food; it's more efficient to grow in large quantities and wastes less energy than say meat. Also, the key to solving many of the world's problems is education, so it is important to really donate to foundations that support education in impoverished countries. That's a way to help decrease poverty in the long run.

anon351714
Post 9

Is that a PPP figure?

browncoat
Post 8

@anon334952 - Africa is also a big place with a lot of different standards of living. I actually think it's really unfortunate that all anyone thinks of when they think of a generic "Africa" is poor people who are constantly on the verge of dying, because, while there are a lot of poor people there, there is a growing middle class as well.

I lived in West Africa for a while and I actually agree a little bit that $2 can be more than it sounds when people don't have rent to pay and food and other commodities are cheap.

The problem is that infrastructure remains expensive and $2 or $20 isn't going to matter when there's no clean water available within a hundred miles of your village.

pleonasm
Post 7

@TRMOhio - The equation is not as simple as the idea that people should limit their children to one or two and would then be able to feed themselves better. Two dollars remains two dollars, when split between four or eight and, if anything, having more children means those families (sadly) have more potential sources of income.

Even more sadly, often they have many children because they know there's a great chance many of them will die. Usually not from lack of food, which isn't really as big a problem as lack of medicine and lack of education.

As to the idea of taking from the rich. How about the rich stop taking from the poor? I'd be happy enough with that solution.

anon334952
Post 6

"living off the land in Montana or in Africa"?

Montana and Africa are not even close in terms of standards of living, infrastructure, or trade. People in Montana are not a bunch of hicks living off the land with little trade and everyone growing their own food.

anon331528
Post 5

"Taking from the “rich” has been tried many times, and always has failed."

I always love seeing this myth. It's a great opportunity to look down on people. Get informed, and see the richest people in the world are the North European/Scandinavian countries. Look at any listing on anything of value like health care, education, cultural participation, salary equality, and see the USA tumbling down next to poor African countries.

TRMOhio
Post 4

I do feel sorry for the poor and hungry.

If they limited their family to one or two children, they might be able to feed themselves.

Of course, if you live in NY City, or any complex society, everything has to be paid for with money. But living off the land in Montana or in Africa, where there is little trade, you grow your own food, and the need for cash money is much smaller.

Over the generations, we get what our parents and grandparents invested for a better future. Without that sacrifice, the standard of living does not improve.

Taking from the “rich” has been tried many times, and always has failed. So, people in the US who envy the rich, even to the point of forced “sharing” need to see that world-wide sharing would take from them!

anon303565
Post 1

Three billion people in the world live on less than $2 USD per day. Just repeat that.

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