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Dollar millionaires set to rise 46.2% by 2020: Credit Suisse

Credit Suisse pegs the number of dollar millionaires in India in 2015 at 185,000 and expects a rise of 65% to 305,000 by 2020

Puneet Wadhwa  |  New Delhi 

Rich, Wealth
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The number of dollar millionaires globally is likely to rise by 46.2% over the next five years to 49.3 million adults, according to the latest Global Wealth Report 2015 by Credit Suisse Research Institute.

The report estimates that the number of dollar millionaires worldwide grew from 13.7 million at the turn of the century to 36.1 million in 2014, but fell back this year to 33.7 million due to exchange rate effects. At the very top of the pyramid, there are now over 120,000 UHNWIs (ultra high networth individuals), each worth more than $50 million. The fortunes created in China led to the rapid emergence of a sizable UHNW population, which now makes up 8% of global UHNWIs, the report says. Further below the spectrum, the group of millionaires still only accounts for 0.7% of population, but owns 45.2% of global wealth.

Among regions, China is likely to see the largest percentage increase going ahead, the report says with the number of dollar millionaires increasing by 74%. It pegs the number of dollar millionaires in India in 2015 at 1,85,000 and expects them to touch 3,05,000 by 2020 - up 65% from the current levels. The report also estimates that 2,080 adults in India currently have wealth over $50 million and 940 people own more than $100 million.

"Africa will likely be the next performing region, with millionaires rising by 73%, albeit from a lower base. Overall, emerging (low to middle-income economies) account for 6.5% of millionaires and will see their share rise to 7.4% by the end of the decade. Millionaire net wealth is likely to rise by 8.4% annually, as more people enter this segment.

Emerging will likely account for 9.1% of millionaire wealth in 2020, 1% above current levels," the Credit Suisse report suggests.

The Middle-Class

Middle-class's wealth in India grew at a scorching pace of 283.7% between the years 2000 - 2015, but was much below China's growth at 618.4%, the report suggests. Philippines (407.7%), Columbia (383.8%), Russia (374.2%), Australia (340.5%), Korea (254.3%) and Singapore (240.7%) are some of the other countries that saw a healthy rate of growth in the total wealth of the middle class between the years 2000 - 2015.

The report defines the middle-class in terms of a wealth band instead of an income range and uses the US as the benchmark country where a middle-class adult is defined as having wealth between $50,000 and $500,000 valued at mid-2015 prices.

"Our results show an expansion this century in the number of middle-class adults from 524 million in 2000 to 664 million in 2015, a rise of 140 million or 27%. This is a substantial increase by any standard, even allowing for the rise in population over this period," the report says. India, the report says, has added 7.7 million middle-class adults between the years 2000 - 2015, a rise of 43.6% during this period. Except the global financial crisis, wealth has grown rapidly in India with annual growth of wealth per adult (in rupees) averaging 8% over 2000-2015.

"Prior to 2008, wealth also rose strongly in US dollar terms, from USD 2,040 in 2000 to USD 5,100 in 2007. After falling 26% in 2008, it rebounded to reach USD 5,300 in 2010, but then fell 13% in 2011 due to adverse exchange rate movements," Credit Suisse says.

As in many other developing countries, personal wealth in India is dominated by property and other real assets, which make up 86% of estimated household assets. Personal debts pegged at $346, even when adjustments are made for the significant underreporting that is believed to affect the household survey used to estimate personal debts in India.

"While wealth has been rising strongly in India and the ranks of the middle class and wealthy have been swelling, not everyone has shared in this growth and there is still a great deal of poverty. This is reflected in the fact that 95% of the adult population has wealth below $10,000," the Credit Suisse report says.

Number of millionaires
2015 2020 Change (%)
Africa 126 217 73%
Asia-Pacific 4,931 8,069 64%
China 1,333 2,320 74%
Europe 10,011 15,514 55%
India 185 305 65%
Latin America 485 738 52%
North America 16,646 22,111 33%
WORLD 33717 49274 46%
Source: Credit Suisse Global Wealth 2015 report

Change in household wealth, 2015, by region
Total Wealth 2015 (bn$) Chg in total wealth (2014-15)
Bn $ %
Africa 2,596 –223 –7.9
Asia-Pacific 45,958 –5,355 –10.4
China 22,817 1,494 7
Europe 75,059 –10,664 –12.4
India 3,447 –35 –1.0
Latin America 7,461 –1,535 –17.1
North America 92,806 3,897 4.4
WORLD 250,145 –12,420 –4.7
Source: Credit Suisse Global Wealth 2015 report

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First Published: Tue, October 13 2015. 17:50 IST