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Asia Minute: Wealth Grows in the Asia Pacific

Pictures of Money

Trade tensions between the United States and its economic partners have started to hurt growth around the world. That’s the view of the International Monetary Fund — which this month cut its forecast for global economic growth for this year and next year from nearly 4 percent to 3.7 percent. But for the very wealthy, there is faster growth – especially in the Asia Pacific.

When it comes to big money, the Asia Pacific is on an upward swing.

Earlier this year, a financial research firm called Wealth-X found that Asia is now home to more billionaires than North America. That’s a change, and the billionaire population is growing faster in Asia than anywhere else in the world.

This week, the Credit Suisse Research Institute released its latest Global Wealth Report — showing that it’s not just billionaires on the rise in the Asia Pacific. The region is now home to more than 20-percent of the world’s millionaires.

The biggest contributors to that list include China, Japan, Australia, South Korea and Taiwan.

Singapore has seen the number of millionaires in the country grow by more than 11 percent over just the last year. The country also makes the top ten economies with the highest average wealth per adult — half that category comes from Europe.

Credit Tracy O Money! / Flickr

Switzerland is tops, and Australia is second — followed by the United States. Then comes Belgium and Norway — with New Zealand next. Canada, Denmark and France round out the countries with the highest average wealth.

Disparity in wealth is a growing social and political concern in many parts of the world.

The fastest growing population of billionaires is found in another country where poverty remains a grinding struggle for millions – India.

Bill Dorman has been the news director at Hawaiʻi Public Radio since 2011.
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