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Rich get richer as world wealth tops $150 trillion

By Michael Finnigan

A huge surge in private wealth has created more than a million new millionaires, according to new research released by Boston Consulting Group (BCG).

According to their report Global Wealth 2014, the amount of private wealth held by households across the globe rose by 14.6% in 2013 to reach a total of $152 trillion (€112 trillion) by the end of the financial year. 

Boosted by rising stock markets, the growth of private wealth accelerated across most international regions, with Asian economies (excluding Japan) reported to be the fastest growing at 30.5%.  

“In nearly all countries, the growth of private wealth was driven by the strong rebound in equity markets that began in the second half of 2012,” BCG said in their report. 

“The performance was spurred by relative economic stability in Europe and the US and signs of recovery in Europe.” 

North America and Western Europe remained the wealthiest regions in the world, with Russia posting less then expected thanks to economic uncertainty created in wake of the Ukraine crisis. 

Double-digit growth was seen across Eastern Europe, the Middle East and Africa. 

The report also delved into Asian growth, suggesting that the region is set to become the world’s second wealthiest by the fall of 2014, overtaking Western Europe. The report said Asia was on track to knock North America from the top spot by 2018.

The report forecasts that India will have private financial wealth of $5 trillion by 2018.

Overall, global private wealth is estimated to grow by 5.4% annually until 2018, where it will have reached $198.2 trillion. 

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