Look China rich help drive global billionaire wealth to $12.3 trillion

Look China rich help drive global billionaire wealth to $12.3 trillion

The total wealth held by the world's billionaires has surged by 19 per cent to $12.6 trillion, according to a survey of more than 2,000 of the world's richest people.

China led the world in creating new billionaires last year, and the collective wealth of the elite group jumped 39% last year to $1.12 trillion, according to estimates in a new reportfrom Swiss investment bank UBS AG and accountants PwC.

At the current rate, UBS and PwC expect Asia-Pacific billionaires to be wealthier than their U.S. peers in under three years.

China now has the highest concentration of billionaires outside the United States, according to the "Billionaires insight" report released on Friday.

It's exactly that kind of ingenuity that has helped the world's most populous nation churn out new billionaires at a prodigious clip, according to John Mathews, head of ultra-high net worth in the Americas for UBS Group AG.

'But this is just the beginning. The number of billionaires in Asia is growing at a rate of 14% year-on-year, compared with just 5% in the US.

This incident, along with the recent show trials and tribulations of Chinese executives, shows that while the country has ramped up its production of new billionaires, the megarich and the bankers who chase them face a far more complex and uncertain future than their Western counterparts.

Ravi Raju, head of Asia Pacific ultra high-net-worth at UBS Global Wealth Management, said: "Asia's billionaires are young and relentless".

It said 97 percent of them are self-made, many of them in sectors such as technology and retail.

'They are developing new business models, seizing opportunities, moving rapidly between business sectors'.

The latest UBS/PWC billionaires report charts exactly how and where the moneyed elite is prospering. We have also found that Next Gen billionaires are extremely entrepreneurial. "Indeed, numerous younger generation want to change the world, making an impact through their family offices and philanthropic organisations", he said.

U.S. and Asia ex-Japan equities could fall by 20% from their mid-summer 2018 levels. "Over the past five years, the sum passed by deceased billionaires to beneficiaries has grown by an average of 17% each year, to reach $117bn in 2017".

"The past 30 years have seen far greater wealth creation than the Gilded Age" the UBS Billionaires 2018 report states. "There are 701 billionaires over the age of 70, whose wealth will transition to heirs and philanthropy over the next 20 years, given the statistical probability of average life expectancy".

These mega-rich increased their wealth by a $1.4 trillion which is more than the entire GDP of Spain or Australia.

Currency appreciation saw European billionaires' wealth grow by 19 percent although the number of billionaires rose by just 4% to 414.

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