Are you feeling wealthy?
Commsec reported that Australian household wealth has reached a new record high as share markets (and therefore super balances) as well as dwelling prices continued to rise in 2013.
At the end of 2013, total household wealth exceeded a record $7,500 billion, an increase of around $250 billion in the calendar year.
That’s an average of $322,757 per capita, making Australia an extraordinarily wealthy country.
Household wealth during the financial crisis suffered a little as share markets dived, but Australia had bounced back relatively swiftly by the end of 2013.
But it’s not evenly distributed
As in all capitalist societies, however, the wealth continues to be distributed unevenly.Largely thanks to our compulsory superannuation (a major driver of the high average household wealth figure) most working Australians will have benefited from a strong 5 years on the share markets.
Similarly those who own their own home will have benefited since dwelling prices reached new heights in 2013 as wages and household incomes increased for yet another year.
The losers in today’s low interest rate environment include net savers and often pensioners, since fixed interest returns have dived over the past two decades.
The beneficiaries since the financial crisis have included those with profitable businesses, large share portfolios and heavy real estate exposure.