Visualizing the World’s Wealthy

Courtesy of the Visual Capitalist are some, well, visuals about the location, net worth, and trajectory of the world’s 16 million or so millionaires


World's Millionaires

Basically, the world’s richest denizens are increasing in both number and total wealth, especially in the developing world — led, perhaps unsurprisingly, by China — though the vast majority of them make “only” $1-5 million.

Nevertheless, established economic powers, chiefly the United States, continue to harbor a large and increasingly-wealthier population of millionaires (and for that matter billionaires), most of whom live in the big, globally-connected cities we are all familiar with. (Since big cities naturally bring bigger opportunities.)

The breakdown by city and region is as follows:

Rich Cities -- Asia

Rich Cities -- Oceania

Rich Cities -- Europe

Rich Cities -- Mideast

Rich Cities -- Latin America

Rich Cities -- North America

Only seventeen cities worldwide have 100,000 or more millionaires, and only the China, Japan, Switzerland, and the U.S. has more than one city with such a large community.

Some other takeaways from the article:

Tokyo, Hong Kong, and Singapore are the undisputed millionaire population capitals in Asia, but mainland China is coming up quick from behind.

In just the last 10 years, China has upped its millionaire count by 281% to 719,400 in total – and Beijing (with 122,100 millionaires) now cracks the top five list in Asia.

Australia’s millionaire count has soared 85% over the last 10 years, thanks in part to red-hot property prices.

London is the millionaire capital for the world, with 357,200 of them.

Despite its relatively small size in comparison to the European heavyweights, Switzerland also has two cities in the top five: Geneva and Zurich.

Not surprisingly, Dubai is the biggest destination for the ultra-rich to flock to in the Middle East.

Mexico City, and then the two big ones in Brazil (São Paulo and Rio), are where millionaires congregate in Latin America.

The U.S. has 4.3 million millionaires, and they are widely dispersed through the country.

The Knight Frank 2017 report lists five cities: NYC, Washington, D.C., San Francisco (incl. Bay Area), Los Angeles, and Miami – all of which, according to their calculations, have more than 30k millionaires.

Canada’s Toronto also has broken the six-digit barrier with over 100,000 millionaires.

It is worth pointing out that while this trend is commensurate with an overall decline in poverty, it is not necessarily indicative of widespread prosperity in the given country or city where the wealthy congregate. Indeed, wealth and income inequality are reaching record heights across most of the world, and this is reflected in the increasingly concentrated nature of economic growth (e.g., the richest take a disproportionately larger share of national or global wealth that is generated).

However, that is a whole other complex discussion worthy of a seperate post. Feel free to share your own thoughts or reactions on this data.


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