Friday, October 19, 2018


Globally, there are just under 150,000 people with assets of more than $50m. Of these, 50,000 have personal wealth of more than $100m, and 4,390 have assets of more than $500m. The richest 1% own just under half of the world’s global assets, which is roughly the same proportion as last year. The dominance of the super-rich had been driven by rising inequality

The UK’s ranks of the ultra-rich have swelled by 400 over the last year, taking the number of people with fortunes of more than £38m ($50m) to nearly 5,000.

The fortunes of the already very wealthy are growing at a far faster rate than the general population, according to a report by the Swiss bank Credit Suisse.

The number of ultra-high net worth individuals (UHNWIs) in Britain over the 12 months to summer 2018 increased by 8.5% to 4,670, while the average Briton saw their wealth, including property, increase by just 1% to £213,000.

Anthony Shorrocks, an economist and author of the report, said the fortunes of the rich were growing much faster than the general population because those with investments had benefited from booming stock markets. “There are a lot of people with wealth just below $50m, and they are tipping over into the UHNWI bracket,” he added.

The richest person in the UK is Sir Jim Ratcliffe, the founder and chief executive of the petrochemicals company Ineos and a high-profile Brexiter, who has an estimated fortune of £21bn. Ratcliffe is preparing to leave Britain for tax-free Monaco – just months after he was knighted by the Queen. 

While the number of the UK’s ultra-rich is growing quickly, the pace in the US is even faster. More than 6,000 in the US joined the UHNWI bracket, taking the total to 70,540, which means the country accounts for 47% of the global UHNWI population.

China is in second place with 16,510, followed by Germany (which an 11% decline) with 6,320. The UK has the fourth-largest population of UHNWIs, ahead of Japan, India, and Italy.

The number of UHNWIs has increased fourfold since the turn of the millennium, according to the report which said, “Rising inequality can also boost the speed at which new millionaires are created...Since the global financial crisis, wealth inequality has trended upward, propelled in part by the rising share of financial assets, and a strengthening US dollar,” the report said.

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