At a spending rate of $US1 million a day, most people would blow through their entire life savings in less than a week.
But for billionaire Bill Gates, it would take 218 years to spend his approximate $US79 billion fortune at this rate, according to new research from Oxfam that was recently highlighted by The Guardian. That’s about three Ferraris a day.
It would take Mexico’s Carlos Slim, the world’s richest man, even longer at 220 years. Warren Buffett could get through his fortune slightly faster, but it would still take 169 years to clear his bank account.
While few could keep up with these hypothetical spending patterns, more people than ever can call themselves billionaires these days. In fact, the number of billionaires in the world has more than doubled since the recession, rising from 793 in March 2009 to 1,645 in March 2014, Oxfam reports.
And wealth proves to be the gift that keeps on giving — billionaires average a 5.3% return on wealth, compared to the 1.95% return rate for the ordinary person. This means Gates makes an approximate $US11.5 million a day from interest.
When comparing this extreme wealth to those on the other side of the economic spectrum, however, the report found some startling inequalities. Namely, the 85 richest people in the world have a combined net worth equal to the poorest half of the entire global population.
But Gates and Buffett aren’t looking for ways to idly blow cash. Rather, both billionaires are known for their charitable ways. Gates runs the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, which received nearly $US3 billion from Buffett alone in 2014.
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