Asia-Pacific to become home to most HNWIs

The 2014 World Wealth Report shows that improving economic and equity market performance helped add 1.76 million people to the global High Net Worth Individual (HNWI)1 population in 2013, while the investable wealth of HNWIs grew by nearly 14 percent to reach a record high of US$52.62 trillion.

The 15 per cent surge in the wealthy population is the second-largest since 2000, notes the report. North America remains the home of the world’s largest HNWI group, but Asia-Pacific is catching up, closing the gap to less than 10,000 individuals. Indeed, North America’s HNWI population expanded by 16 percent to 4.33 million, while Asia-Pacific’s grew by 17 percent to reach 4.32 million.

“Overall, 2013 was another strong year for the High Net Worth market, with surging equity markets and improving economies contributing to double digit growth in both population and wealth levels,” comments M. George Lewis, Group Head, RBC Wealth Management & RBC Insurance.

“Looking at longer term growth trends, nearly 40 percent of the current level of High Net Worth wealth has been created in the past five years alone.”

The research also reveals that the vast majority (92 per cent) of HNWIs feel that investing their time, money or expertise to make a positive social impact is important to them.

Looking ahead, global HNWI wealth is forecast to reach a new high of US$64.3 trillion by 2016, while an anticipated 9.8 per cent annual growth rate in the Asia-Pacific region is expected to make it the largest wealthy population in 2014.