Summary of The Unprecedented Expansion of the Global Middle Class

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The Unprecedented Expansion of the Global Middle Class summary
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Globalization has expanded the market for goods and services worldwide, and the rise of the middle class in developing countries offers a growing consumer base that provides businesses with enormous opportunities. Economist and policy expert Homi Kharas looks into the implications that the growth of the global middle class – which he predicts will reach the five billion mark by 2028 – holds for the environment and the economy. getAbstract recommends his informative though quantitative report to social scientists, economists and marketers.

About the Author

Homi Kharas is deputy director of the Global Economy and Development Program at the Brookings Institution.



The middle class – defined as those households earning between $14,600 and $146,000 per year – is on target to make up a majority of the world population, a historic first, beginning around 2020. Around 1985, some 150 years after the start of the Industrial Revolution, the middle class became one billion strong. Thanks in part to China’s amazing progress, this cohort hit the two billion mark in 2006, and at the end of 2016, it stood at 3.2 billion. At current levels of growth, the middle class will number five billion by 2028. Nearly 90% of the next one billion people to attain middle...

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