Number of rich Chinese rises nearly nine-fold in decade, survey suggests


The number of rich people in China has risen nearly nine times in a decade, a private survey released on Tuesday showed, as strong growth in the world’s second-largest economy spurred wealth creation.

Chinese with at least 10 million yuan (US$1.47 million) of investable assets hit 1.6 million in 2016, up from 180,000 in 2006, according to the 2017 China Private Wealth Report by Bain Consulting and China Merchants Bank.

The overall value of the private wealth market increased to 165 trillion yuan last year, growing 21 per cent annually from 2014 to 2016.

But the growth rate of China’s private wealth market is expected to decline to 14 per cent in 2017 to a total size of 188 trillion yuan.

About 120,000 “high net worth individuals” had at least 100 million yuan worth of investable assets, up from less than 10,000 people in 2006.

The percentage of rich with overseas investment increased to 56 per cent in 2017, up from 19 per cent in 2011, but the overall percentage of assets invested overseas has stabilised since 2013.

The top five destinations for investment were Hong Kong, the United States, Australia and Canada although Hong Kong’s popularity fell 18 per cent and the US dropped three per cent from 2015 to 2017.

People surveyed said their top three reasons for investing overseas were to diversify investment risks, to capture market opportunities of overseas investments and to migrate.

Sixty-three percent of rich Chinese rely on financial service providers to manage their domestic financial assets and among them about half use private banking services provided by commercial banks.

China’s wealthy are concentrated in major cities and coastal areas, the survey found, but now 22 Chinese provinces have at least 20,000 high net worth individuals . Most of the people surveyed said their top priorities. were “wealth preservation” and “wealth inheritance”, in contrast to 2009 when nearly half polled said “wealth creation” or “quality of life” were their main goals.

Reuters | SCMP


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