One group of people did extremely well in 2013, and that was the super-rich around the world. Although the prices of the sorts of luxury things they crave rose well above inflation, so did their incomes, and there are more of them than before.
1.76 million people joined the ranks of the High Net Worth Individuals who have a million to play with after the house, cars, and art collections are taken out of the equation. There are now 13.7 million people in this exclusive club.
Nearly a third of them are in the US, while Germany is the highest-ranked European country. China is fourth and climbing fast, Britain is just behind in fifth place.
They also increased their wealth; up by 13.8%, and now control 38.6 trillion euros. In fact there are now so many, (in small Switzerland one in every 24 people is in clover), that a second category, Ultra-High Net worthers, is reserved for those with over 30 million to play with. There are 128,000 of these people, a rise of 18,000 since 2012.
40% of these fortunes did not exist five years ago, yet with the exception of China the money is staying mostly in the traditional major markets, with the top four accounting for 70% of the rise in wealthy individuals, adding over three times more than the next 21 combined. They now have nearly 60% of the total HNWI population.
The latest data also suggests the average age of the super-rich is falling thanks mainly to the dot-com boomers.