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One percent of world's population holds almost half its wealth

Staff writer ▼ | June 8, 2016
Some 18.5 million households around the world have at least $1 million worth of assets, for a total of $78.8 trillion.
Wealth   Boston Consulting Group reports:
This is about the same size as global annual economic output, Boston Consulting Group's annual report on global private wealth says.

That also amounts to 47 percent of total global wealth - based on holdings of cash, financial accounts, and equities, but not real estate - leaving the rest to be divided by the other 99 percent of the world's population.

The elite one percent have steadily grown their share of global wealth from 45 percent in 2013 to 47 percent last year, the findings show, supporting worries among economists that inequality is growing around the globe.

The United States tops the world's count of millionaires by far, with eight million at least that wealthy, followed by China with two million millionaires and Japan with half that number.

Per capita, however, the largest concentrations of wealthy are in the tax havens of Liechtenstein and Switzerland.

But overall wealth has grown fastest in the Asia-Pacific region, thanks to East Asia's booming economies, at a rate of 12.3 percent annually over the past five years and with forecasts it will grow more than 10 percent a year to 2020.

Excluding Japan, the Asia-Pacific region will account for more than 40 percent of global wealth growth over the coming half-decade, the report said. Most of that will be in China and India.