Key Facts

The Super rich

  • The top 1% earn  £118,027 or more per year (Source: BBC)
  • In Bristol some of the top 1% are paid out of our council tax (Source: Evening Post)
  • In Bristol many of the Merchant Venturers will be part of the 1%
  • The top ten percent now have 100 times the wealth of the bottom ten percent. (Source: Hills Report)
  • The top ten percent earn 4.1 times the incomes of the bottom ten percent, with the top 1 percent more than 10 times. The same figure was 3.1 in 1961.
  • The average CEO earns 250 times the average cleaner.
  • Levels of social mobility are the lowest among all developed economies.
  • There are more than 50 hedge fund managers among Britain’s richest 1,000 people. (Source Sunday Times Rich list)

Bank bail-outs:

The Bank of England estimates that the total costs of bailing out the financial system is £1.3tr, or more than 10 times the entire NHS budget.The UK bank bailout accounts for about 1/3 of the global banking bailout.

3 years on the British government continues to subsidise ‘too big to fail banks’ banks:

  • £46 billion: the combined subsidy the ‘Big Five’ UK banks enjoyed in 2010;
  • £10 billion: of British taxpayer’s money was paid in indirect subsidy to Barclays
  • Lloyds, RBS, HSBC and Nationwide also enjoyed subsidies of £15bn, £13bn, £7bn and £1bn respectively.

The ‘too-big-to-fail’ subsidy for the UK’s largest four banks is 62% higher than the equivalent subsidy in Germany, despite the fact that the German economy is significantly larger.

[New Economics Foundation, Quid Pro Quo, September 2011]

Austerity cuts:

£83 billion: the amount of public sector cuts planned by the government by 2014-15. Effectively cutting the incomes of ordinary people by

  • 6.2% for typical families with two young people on modest earnings (£37,000 combined income)
  • 4.2% for more well off families with children at university (£78,000 combined income)
  • 10.4% the average working lone parent with two children
  • 16.2% pensioner couples

The cuts are hitting the poorest hardest according to the Institute for Fiscal Studies.

[TUC, Where the Money Goes, October 2010:]


  • The economy has lost 2 million jobs since the beginning of the recession.
  • 2.57 million people out of work (or 8.1% of working-age population)
  • 21.3% of 16-25 year olds out of work. That is almost 1 million young people, the demographic group that has lost out most from the fall in demand for labour.
  • 250,000 jobs have been cut in the public sector in the last year.
  • Research published by TUC on Monday found that those previously working in the lowest paid jobs make up nearly half of all new unemployed claimants since 2008.

One Response to Key Facts

  1. Owain says:

    I just wanted to comment on the “key facts” page of the website:

    – The top 1% earn £118,027 or more per year

    This should say “Of those people who take a conventional salary, and pay income tax via PAYE, the top 1% earn approximately £118,027 or more per year.” The real top 1% earnings would be extremely difficult to calculate as this would need to take into account other things like self employed earners, pension contributions, dividends received, shares received, capital gains made and all sorts of other factors.

    The remaining statements below this are therefore brought into question as to whether they truly represent part of “the 1%”. While I personally don’t disagree with the implication that many of these people referenced are on extortionate salaries, I do wish there was more focus here on why the salaries are unfair, and how this has come to be. As an objective observer, I think some of the statements just provoke jealousy and bitterness, which I don’t think are constructive emotions on which to raise awareness.

    I admire the efforts made here, and hope it continues to help reduce the greed and corruption in our society.

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