Oxfam reported Monday that the 62 wealthiest people alive now possess more wealth collectively than half the human race. The report also points out that that upper-crust subset has shrunken considerably in recent years. In 2010 a whopping 388 people held as much wealth as half the planet, but now that number is down to a nice and cozy 62.

Two main factors are at play here. One, the rich are getting richer (worldwide, across the U.S., and here in NYC), while the world's poorest inhabitants get poorer. The Oxfam report reveals that that bottom 50% lost a trillion dollars in wealth since 2010, even as the human race added another 400 million to its total population.

All told, the richest 62 people alive now lay claim to $1.76 trillion. Only nine of them are women.

"While such extreme inequality is bad for all of us, it's the poorest among us who suffer the grimmest consequences," Raymond C. Offenheiser, President of Oxfam America, told ABC in a statement. And Offenheiser is right— UNICEF stresses that extreme poverty puts children at a greater risk of labor, exploitation, and HIV infection, while in the U.S., 4.5% of all deaths in 2000 were attributed to poverty. In their new report, Oxfam stresses that the average annual income of the poorest 10 percent has risen by less than $3 per year over the last 25 years.

Measures like the closing of offshore tax-dodge havens, redoubled investment in public services, and a rise in wages for the world's lowest-paid workers are the three primary recommendations offered by Oxfam.

Here are some other gems, pulled from today's report:

  • "As much as 30 percent of all African financial wealth is estimated to be held offshore, costing an estimated $14 billion in lost tax revenues every year"
  • Governments lose an estimated $190 billion each year due to offshore tax havens
  • "Had inequality within countries not grown between 1990 and 2010, an extra 200 million people would have escaped poverty"

Speaking to the Guardian, the Equality Trust's Duncan Exley stressed that “Inequality, both globally but also in the UK, is now at staggering levels. We know that such a vast gap between the richest and the rest of us is bad for our economy and society. We now need our politicians to wake up and address this dangerous concentration of wealth and power in the hands of so few.”