After growing at a sluggish pace over the past few years, global wealth grew at a robust 6.4 per cent in FY17, as shown in Chart 1. Credit Suisse estimates that the richest 36 million individuals in the world now account for a staggering $128 trillion or 45.9 per cent of the global wealth. By comparison, the bottom 70 per cent account for a mere 2.7 per cent of the global wealth, as shown in Chart 2. This increase in wealth is driven not only by equity markets but also by a significant increase in non-financial wealth. As shown in Chart 3, non-financial assets grew by 6.5 per cent last year, while financial assets grew by 5.8 per cent. North America leads the wealth list with a combined wealth of $101 trillion, followed by Europe at $79 trillion. Africa ranks last on the list with a combined wealth of $2.4 trillion. The report says total wealth in India would be at $5 trillion in 2017. The country is estimated to have 245,000 dollar millionaires, as shown in Chart 4. But much of the country’s wealth is concentrated in non-financial assets such as real estate (Chart 5). Over the next five years, Credit Suisse estimates the number of millionaires in the world would rise by 22 per cent, as shown Chart 6.
Fastest growth is seen in Africa, followed by Latin America. In India, the number is expected to grow by 52 per cent, reaching 372,000 by 2022.But despite growing at a faster pace, India lags miles behind the US. As shown in Chart 7, the projected wealth of India in 2022 would only be equivalent to that of the US in 1940.