That is a devastating reversal after decades of progress, and higher than the bank previously estimated, even as recently as August, when the worst case was put at 100 million.
And the bank's new report estimates that by 2021, 150 million could be living below the extreme poverty threshold of less than $1.90 a day.
"The pandemic and global recession may cause over 1.4 percent of the world's population to fall into extreme poverty," World Bank President David Malpass said in a statement.
If the pandemic had not struck, the global extreme poverty rate was expected to fall to 7.9 percent, but now could climb as high as 9.4 percent, the bank said in its flagship report.
World Bank economists say the dire estimates for new victims of poverty this year, which range from 88 million to 115 million, depend on the outlook for the global economy, which the Washington-based crisis lender estimates range from a contraction of five percent to eight percent in the worst case scenario.
That would erode years of success in reducing extreme poverty, and the authors warn create "poverty hotspots" in areas that face a double-hit from economic crisis and conflict: more than 40 percent of the poor live in conflict-affected areas.