A report on Tuesday found the total net worth of ultra high net worth individuals (UHNWIs) around the world fell 1.7% in 2018 to $32.3 trillion, with Asia leading the way.
The World Ultra Wealth Report by Wealth-X found net worth in Asia fell at a faster rate than in both North America and Europe.
PBI has reported on several studies with similar findings in 2018, a year that wreaked havoc on UHNWI portfolios.
In July, Capgemini’s World Wealth Report found the number of HNWIs around the world fell for the first time in seven years. There were 3% fewer HNWIs (individuals worth over $1 million, UHNWIs have over $30m) in 2018 compared to the year before. Collectively, they were $2 trillion poorer.
While Wealth-X said the number of UHNWIs “showed muted growth in 2018, rising by 0.8%”, Capgemini found their number fell by 6%.
But both studies blamed much of the decline on China. “Key drivers were the deepening trade war between the US and China”, said the Wealth-X report. Collective net worth in China dropped by 1.3% despite a small rise in the number of ultra wealthy individuals.
These findings corroborate with a third study by China’s Hurun report, which analyses the level of wealth in the country. Earlier this year, it found as many as 213 Chinese billionaires lost their dollar billionaire status after poor market performance in 2018.
Globally, Hurun estimated the world’s billionaires are a collective $1 trillion poorer and 430 people lost their ‘billionaire’ status.
However, Wealth-X looks hopefully at the four ahead, predicting UHNWIs will increase by 33% to 353,550 individuals by 2023 and their wealth will rise to $43 trillion.