AUSTRALIA’S richest people are putting their money into real estate and technology start-ups to grow and maintain their wealth.
The number of very wealthy people — also known as high net worth individuals (HNWI) — in Australia rose to 234,000 in 2015, up from 226,000 the year before, a new report shows.
HNWIs are people with more than $US1 million ($A1.33 million) in assets — excluding their primary home, collectables and other goods — that can be invested.
The 20th edition of the World Wealth Report by technology and consulting firm Capgemini ranks Australia in ninth place when it comes to global markets expected to drive growth through to 2025. Phil Gomm, from Capgemini Australia, said wealthy Australians were benefiting from strong property prices despite weaker share market investments.
“Our wealth creation still looks to be strong particularly in terms of creation of wealth through real estate investments,” Mr Gomm told AAP.
“If there was a stronger outcome in equity investment, then we would have seen a stronger lift in wealth creation across that period.” He said Aussies were also following the global trend in investing in technology and start-ups.
“HNWIs want their wealth managers to be presenting investment opportunities in that tech sector that allows them to expedite their wealth creation,” he said.
“This is characteristic of Silicon Valley in California where significant wealth is being created for a small population.” The report, based on a survey of more than 5,200 HNWIs across 23 countries and interviews with wealth managers, also found a trend towards automated trading platforms and digital solutions for wealth management.
And for the first time in the report’s history, the Asia Pacific region, which includes Australia along with Japan and China, has eclipsed North America when it comes to the number and combined value of HNWI.
In 2015, Asia-Pacific had 5.1 million rich people with a combined wealth of US$17.4 trillion, while North America had US$16.6 trillion in wealth across a HNWI population of 4.8 million.