Sept. 27, 2019
Last year the world’s super-rich got a little less so.
The wealth of the worldwide population of so-called ultra-high-net-worth individuals — those with fortunes of at least $30 million — slipped by about 1.7% to a collective $32.3 trillion in 2018, according to an annual survey by data company Wealth-X. It was the first decline in three years.
Meanwhile, the ranks of the ultra-high net worth increased slightly, by about 0.8% to an estimated 265,490 individuals.
So, um, three cheers for equality.
Wealth-X said the decline in overall wealth was largely tied to the plunging stock prices during the final weeks of 2018, especially in Asia. In Hong Kong, which Wealth-X treats as a nation, the number of super-rich plunged by more than 11% to an estimated 8,950 last year.
The Chinese economy has been slowing as a result of heavy debt levels and the ongoing trade dispute with the U.S. What’s more, Hong Kong has been mired in weeks of anti-mainland political protests that have begun taking a toll on the city’s economy. (Since Wealth-X’s data is through the end of 2018, the effects of the protests which began in June, aren’t reflected in the report.)
In the U.S., the population of super-wealthy rose 2.2% to 81,340 last year, while the estimated amount of their wealth slipped by 0.1% to more than $9.8 trillion.
Don’t shed any tears, however. Most of these super-rich people have likely regained any lost wealth since the end of 2018. While the stock market finished last year down about 4%, so far this year it’s up about 20%.
Courtesy of Wealth-X