Credit Suisse has released the latest version of it’s Global Wealth Report 2012 which aims to provide the most reliable and comprehensive data on global household wealth, covering all components of wealth and spanning the entire wealth spectrum.
The report finds that subdued economic growth and collapses in equity prices have made the past year a challenging one for wealth creation and preservation. In this article important aspects of the recent economic environment are reviewed.
India Highlights from Global Wealth Report 2012
As the world’s largest democracy with a strong federal structure and vibrant markets, India has seen rapid growth in wealth since the year 2000. Wealth per adult rose from USD 2,000 in 2000 to USD 5,300 in 2011. Given the 29% rise in the adult population, aggregate wealth more than tripled during the same period. In US dollar terms, there was a significant contraction in 2008, but most of this was due to an exchange rate depreciation.
The rupee took another dive in 2011–12, causing a 20% decline in wealth in USD terms. However, wealth per capita increased slightly measured in rupees. Adjusted for exchange rate movements, wealth growth has been quite steady since 2000, increasing at an average annual rate of 8%.
Together with most countries in the developing world, in India, personal wealth is heavily skewed towards property and other real assets, which make up 84% of estimated household assets. Personal debts are recorded at only USD 162 per adult. However, it has been claimed that the large and well established household survey on which the debt for India is based suffers from a significant under-reporting of household liabilities, with the result that this figure may have been underestimated.
While wealth has been rising strongly in India, and the ranks of the middle class and wealthy have been swelling, not everyone has shared in this growth and there is still a great deal of poverty. This is reflected in the fact that almost everyone in India (95%) has wealth below USD 10,000.
At the other end of the scale, a very small proportion of the population (just 0.3%) has a net worth over USD 100,000. However, due to India’s large population, this translates into 2.3 million people. India has 237,000 members of the top 1% of global wealth holders, which equates to a 0.5% share. There are 1,500 UHNW individuals with wealth over USD 50 million and 700 with more than USD 100 million.
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