20 dollar bills *In a story truly based on the phrase the rich get richer, a U.K.-based charity says the wealthiest one percent will own more than the rest of us combined by next year.

Oxfam International’s study released Monday morning ahead of the World Economic Forum in Davos showed the world’s global elite increased their share of wealth from 44 percent in 2009 to 48 percent last year, a number Oxfam’s executive director called “simply staggering.”

Oxfam executive director Winnie Byanyima stressed prolific lobbying, especially in the U.S., has sent public dollars to special interests instead of benefitting the whole population. (Video via USAID) “Extreme inequality isn’t just a moral wrong. It undermines economic growth and it threatens the private sector’s bottom line.”

The numbers are, of course, controversial. If you believe narrowing the wealth gap makes for a stronger economy, these findings are troubling. If you believe in the trickle-down theory of the wealthy stimulating growth and prosperity, you probably think the numbers are misleading.

This is the same group that attended the World Economic Forum last year and tried to spur debate on economic inequality saying the 85 richest people in the world have as much wealth as the bottom half of the world’s population.

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