Black Wealth: Richest 100 Americans Worth As Much As Total African American Population in U.S.

The wealthiest 100 households on the Forbes 400 list of wealthiest Americans own about as much wealth as the entire U.S. African-American population. That’s the finding of a study by the Institute for Policy Studies (IPS), called Billionaire Bonanza: The Forbes 400 and the Rest of US.

[Related: Blacks in the U.S. Gaining Wealth and Education Faster Than Other Groups]

Among the Forbes 400, just two people are African American: Oprah Winfrey and Vista Equity Partners founder Robert Smith.

In addition, IPS researchers found that:

  • With a combined worth of $2.34 trillion, the Forbes 400— topped by Microsoft Founder Bill Gates —own more wealth than the bottom 61% of the country combined, a staggering 194 million people.
  • The wealthiest 186 members of the Forbes 400 own as much wealth as the entire Latino population. Just five members of the Forbes 400 are Latino, including Jorge Perez, Arturo Moreno, and three members of the Santo Domingo family.
  • The median American family has a net worth of $81,000. The Forbes 400 own more wealth than 36 million of these typical American families; that’s as many households in the United States that own cats.

Researchers site two types of policy interventions …read more      

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