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The Wealth Report 2015

18 March 2015

  • Asia sees highest growth rate in super-rich populations in 2014;
  • Asia’s UHNWI population to overtake that of North America in the next 10 years;
  •  Concentration of wealth remains in Singapore, Hong Kong, New York, London and Mumbai over the next decade

In 2014, around 15 people a day joined the ranks of the ultra-wealthy, or those with a net worth of over US$30m. This growth is set to continue in the coming decade, with the global population of ultra-high-net-worth individuals (UHNWIs) forecast to climb by 34% to a total of almost 231,000.

Most notably on a regional level in 2014, Asia overtook North America as the region with the second-largest increase in UHNWIs – some 1,419 people moved past the $30m+ mark in Asia in 2014, after an increase of fewer than 1,000 in 2013. Standing strong, Europe held onto the top spot with the most new entrants of 1,834 people joining the UHNWI bracket over 2014.

The ultra-wealthy in Asia now also hold more in total wealth with net assets of $5.9tn – 7% more than those in North America with $5.5tn. However, with a $6.4tn treasure chest, European UHNWIs still control the most wealth.  Come 2024, Asia will overtake North America in UHNWI population by 11%.

Mr Liam Bailey, Global Head of Research at Knight Frank, says, “The most rapid growth in wealth will be seen in the likes of Ho Chi Minh City, Jakarta, Mumbai, and Delhi.  One fifth of the 100 global cities assessed in The Wealth Report are expected to see greater than 100% growth over the next decade, all of which are in Asia or Africa.


“The geographic concentration of wealth remains a key trend – with 10% of all additional growth in UHNWIs taking place in just five cities – Singapore, Hong Kong, New York, London and Mumbai over the next decade.” 


Mr Nicholas Holt, Head of Research for Asia Pacific, says, “The rise of Asia and its subsequent impact on prime property within the region and beyond has been one of the key narratives highlighted in The Wealth Report. This growth in wealth is certainly impacting prime residential markets across Asia and Australasia, with the region’s key cities and second home destinations seeing strong price growth over the last five years. This is despite interventions by policy makers in a number of markets, designed to slow price growth and curb foreign ownership.


Over the past nine years, the hunger for knowledge has only increased, especially from our clients here in Asia Pacific, where UHNW property investors are becoming increasingly confident and are looking to diversify their property portfolios by exploring new asset classes and locations.”


“Despite the headwinds facing the global economy as a result of renewed political tensions and fiscal uncertainty in 2014, some countries experienced particularly strong wealth creation last year, with UHNWI populations expanding by 5% or more in 15 countries,” explains Bailey. “Twelve of these countries were emerging economies underlining the fact that despite concerns about the easing of the pace of growth in developing countries, they are still going to be key drivers of wealth creation.” 


10 years from now, in terms of absolute number of UHNWIs:

o   The USA and Japan will still remain top of the list.

o   China (2014 ranking: 5th position)  will overtake Germany (2014 ranking: 3rd position)  and the UK (2014 ranking: 4th position)

o   Singapore (2014 ranking: 13th position) will overtake that of France (2014 ranking: 9th position)


Visit The Wealth Report 2015 site here:


For further information, please contact:

Mr Nicholas Holt, Head of Research, Asia Pacific +65 6429 3595 @nholtKF


Ms Rachel Loke, Head of Public Relations & Communications, Asia Pacific +65 6429 3587 @knightfrank