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Gap Between Rich and Poor: World Income Inequality

To understand how many inhabitants of a country are poor, it is not enough to know a country's per capita income. The number of poor people in a country and the average quality of life depend on how equally or unequally income is distributed across the population. A Gini index value of 0 represents absolute equality, and a value of 100 indicates absolute inequality.

  Countries with
greatest inequality
Gini
index
 1. Lesotho 63.2
 2. South Africa 63.1
 3. Botswana 63.0
 4. Sierra Leone 62.9
 5. Central African Republic 61.3
 6. Namibia 59.7
 7. Haiti 59.2
 8. Colombia 58.5
 9. Honduras 57.7
10. Guatemala 55.1
11. Hong Kong 53.7
12. Thailand 53.6
13. Paraguay 53.2
14. Bolivia 53.0
15. Chile 52.1
16. Panama 51.9
17. Brazil 51.9
18. Papua New Guinea 50.9
19. Zambia 50.8
20. Swaziland 50.4
21. Costa Rica 50.3
22. Gambia 50.2
23. Zimbabwe 50.1
24. Sri Lanka 49.0
25. Mexico 48.3
26. Singapore 47.8
27. Ecuador 47.7
28. Madagascar 47.5
29. China 47.4
30. Dominican Republic 47.2
  Countries with
greatest equality
Gini
Index
 1. Sweden 23.0
 2. Slovenia 23.8
 3. Montenegro 24.3
 4. Hungary 24.7
 5. Denmark 24.8
 6. Norway 25.0
 7. Luxembourg 26.0
 8. Slovakia 26.0
 9. Austria 26.3
10. Finland 26.8
11. Germany 27.0
12. Belarus 27.2
13. Malta 27.4
14. Iceland 28.0
15. Belgium 28.0
16. Serbia 28.2
17. Ukraine 28.2
18. Kazakhstan 28.9
19. Cyprus 29.0
20. Switzerland 29.6
21. Ethiopia 30.0
22. Kosovo 30.0
23. Australia 30.3
24. Pakistan 30.6
25. European Union 30.7
26. Netherlands 30.9
27. Armenia 30.9
27. Czech Republic 31.0
29. Estonia 31.3
30. Italy 31.9
Note: Table data is based on most recent date of information, which varies by country.
Source: World Development Index 2013, World Factbook.

Information Please® Database, © 2008 Pearson Education, Inc. All rights reserved.

Economic Statistics by Country, 2011 Economic Statistics Gap Between Rich and Poor: World Income Inequality

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