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Rich nations Swiss top global wealth ranking

Since 2000, average wealth per adult in Switzerland has risen by 130%, largely due to the appreciation of the Swiss franc against the US dollar

(Keystone)

The average fortune of a Swiss adult is $537,600 (CHF528,000), according to the 2017 Credit Suisse Global Wealth Report.

Switzerland continues to top the Credit Suisse global list for wealth per adult, followed by Australia ($402,600), the United States ($388,600) and New Zealand ($337,400).

Since 2000, average wealth per adult in Switzerland has risen by 130%, largely due to the appreciation of the Swiss franc against the US dollar between 2001 and 2013, Credit Suisse said on Tuesdayexternal link.

Measured in Swiss francs, household wealth in Switzerland rose 35% from 2000 to 2017, representing an average annual growth rate of 1.8%.

Switzerland was also ranked first for median wealth ($229,000 per adult), followed by Australia ($195,400).

Credit Suisse said financial assets make up 54% of gross wealth in Switzerland. Debts average $140,500 per adult, one of the highest absolute levels in the world, and represent 21% of total assets.

Over two-thirds of Swiss adults have assets above $100,000, and 8.8% of the population of 8.3 million are millionaires. Credit Suisse estimates that 2,780 Swiss residents have a fortune of $50 million and above, and 1,070 have more than $100 million.

Continued growth 

Ten years after the onset of the financial crisis, global wealth has grown by 27%, driven by gains in the US, according to the report’s authors.

“A decade since the start of the global financial crisis, we see a significant increase in wealth across all regions of the world. In our home market, Switzerland, wealth per adult has increased by more than 40% during this period and continues to lead the global rankings,” said Urs Rohner, chairman of Credit Suisse.

According to the report, global wealth should continue to grow at a similar pace to the past five years (3.8%) and reach $341 trillion by 2022. Emerging economies are expected to generate wealth at a faster pace than developed nations and are likely to achieve a 22% share in global wealth at the end of the five-year period. The strongest contribution is expected from China: $10 trillion or an increase of 33% over this period.

The Credit Suisse survey had a worrying message for millennials - people born between 1982 and 2000 - who it claims will struggle to earn more money and find better jobs than their parents despite being more highly trained.

Millennials face tougher borrowing rules, rising home prices, and lower income mobility, the report said, adding that only high achievers and those in fields such as technology and finance have better prospects than their parents.

swissinfo.ch/sb

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