UBS/PwC Billionaires Report 2017: Return to growth for billionaires globally, with Asia outpacing the US for the first time
- Globally, the total wealth of billionaires rose by 17 percent in 2016 to USD 6.0 trillion, double the rate of the MSCI World Index.
- Asian billionaires now outnumber their US counterparts, but the US still retains the greatest concentration of wealth
- Billionaires are responsible for businesses that employ a workforce equal to that of the UK
- Networks are playing an increasingly powerful role, with families working together on new ventures and younger entrepreneurs using contacts to orchestrate deals; billionaires are also playing an increasingly important role in art and sports
- The 1,542 billionaires analysed own or partly own companies that employ at least 27.7 million people worldwide – roughly the same as the UK’s working population. The new entrants on the list in 2016 employ at least 2.8 million people.
- Billionaires are creating alternative legacies through their cultural pursuits. They are becoming more engaged in the arts and, increasingly, investing in sports clubs. Private museums are growing in number and public museums are receiving more funding, increasing the accessibility of art to the public. Billionaires are also helping sports clubs to become more sustainable, helping them to deliver associated benefits to the communities they are part of.
- Total billionaire wealth rose by 17 percent from USD 5.1 trillion to USD 6.0 trillion in 2016, led by a surge in Asia’s emerging billionaire class and growth in the materials, industrials, financial and technology sectors. On average, a new billionaire was created in Asia every two days, with the total number of Asian billionaires rising by almost a quarter to 637, compared to 563 in the US.
- The combined wealth of Asian billionaires grew by almost a third from USD 1.5 trillion to USD 2.0 trillion, but still lags behind the US, which maintains the largest concentration of billionaire wealth. In 2016, US billionaires saw their wealth increase from USD 2.4 trillion to USD 2.8 trillion, driven by technological innovation, financial services and materials. The report shows that if the current trend continues, the total wealth of Asian billionaires will overtake that of their counterparts in the US in four years.
- The story for Europe in 2016 was largely the preservation of wealth. There were 342 billionaires in Europe by the end of the year, but growth remained static. Overall wealth grew modestly by 5 percent to just over USD 1.3 trillion, with 24 new billionaires and 21 dropping off, a third of them due to death. This corresponds with previous findings that Europe has the highest number of multi-generational billionaires.
- To download the report and previous reports, please visit https://pwc.to/BI2017
- About UBS:UBS provides financial advice and solutions to wealthy, institutional and corporate clients worldwide, as well as private clients in Switzerland. The operational structure of the Group is comprised of our Corporate Center and five business divisions: Wealth Management, Wealth Management Americas, Personal & Corporate Banking, Asset Management and the Investment Bank. UBS’s strategy builds on the strengths of all of its businesses and focuses its efforts on areas in which it excels, while seeking to capitalize on the compelling growth prospects in the businesses and regions in which it operates, in order to generate attractive and sustainable returns for its shareholders. All of its businesses are capital-efficient and benefit from a strong competitive position in their targeted markets. Headquartered in Zurich, Switzerland, UBS has offices in 54 countries, including all major financial centers, and employs approximately 60,000 people. UBS Group AG is the holding company of the UBS Group. Under Swiss company law, UBS Group AG is organized as an Aktiengesellschaft, a corporation that has issued shares of common stock to investors. Building on a deep understanding of our clients’ mindset, motivations and core values, we create bespoke solutions which are bold, innovative and tailored precisely to their individual needs. The four dimensions of Great Wealth – business, investments, passion, and legacy – form the basis on which we open a dialogue and begin a partnership with our clients across generations for generations, so that Great Wealth endures. For more information, please visit: www.ubs.com
Rowena MearleySenior Manager, Global CommunicationsUnited Kingdomrowena.firstname.lastname@example.org-+44 7952 715 739