Rising global inequality signals coming catastrophe

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Dejected in Singapore. Many Asian countries still compete for foreign investments by repressing unions and wages, putting a brake on wage demands in both poor and richer countries.

Why has inequality been rising, and what are the political, social and economic consequences?

The issue of inequality that was shunted aside amid rapid growth over the last few decades has resurfaced with a vengeance, particularly after the latest global financial crisis. In fact, recent headline news reported that inequality has reached its highest level in the US since such records began to be kept over 100 years ago.

This issue afflicts not only the poor; it also worries the rich. Li Ka Shing, Asia’s richest man, said publicly that he is kept awake at night over rising inequality, and Janet Yellen, chair of the US Federal Reserve System, has raised this issue in one of her recent speeches, inviting the ire of Republican leaders.


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