Australians are the richest people in the world, according to Credit Suisse and in a large part it’s related to their love of property.
In its fifth annual study of global wealth trends, the investment bank found the median Australian adult was worth more than $US225,000 ($258,000) in June, well ahead of the second wealthiest population on
this measure, the Belgians, at $US173,000.
Next on the list were the Italians, the French and the British, all at around $US110,000.
Household wealth in Australia is heavily skewed to “real assets” – essentially property – which average $US319,700 per household, or 60 per cent of gross assets. This is the second highest in the world after Norway.
Only 6 per cent of Australians have wealth below $US10,000, compared with 29 per cent in the United States and 70 per cent for the world as a whole.
The 2014 Global Wealth Report shows global wealth is 20 per cent above its pre-crisis peak and almost 40 per cent higher than the low recorded in 2008.
Australians have punched above their weight
The report outlines Australia’s almost uninterrupted accumulation of wealth over the past 14 years.
Since 2000, the net wealth of the average adult Australian has more than quadrupled, from $US103,151 to $US431,000.
Over the past 12 months, average adult wealth has grown 5 per cent.
The Sydney Morning Herald quoted Credit Suisse Private Bank chief investment strategist David McDonald as saying:
“These are obviously remarkable figures for Australia. We are well positioned globally in terms of wealth, as well as the spread of wealth.”