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Countries with most millionaires: INDIA ranks 11

Last updated on: October 15, 2014 17:23 IST

A Kathakali dancer performs during a cultural programme in Chandigarh.

Image: A Kathakali dancer performs during a cultural programme in Chandigarh. Photograph: Ajay Verma/Reuters

India is home to 11th largest population of Ultra High Net Worth Individuals, but also figures among countries with ‘very high wealth inequality’ with a large number of its residents being in the lower wealth strata, says a new report.

According to the Credit Suisse Global Wealth report, India has 1,800 ultra high net worth individuals -- 11th largest group globally, while the United States tops the chart with 62,800 UHNW adults (equivalent to 49 per cent of the global total).

An employee wearing a panda costume slides down from an ice sculpture during the Harbin International Ice and Snow World festival in Harbin, Heilongjiang province, China.

Image: An employee wearing a panda costume slides down from an ice sculpture during the Harbin International Ice and Snow World festival in Harbin, Heilongjiang province, China. Photograph: Sheng Li/Reuters

China occupies the second place and is home to 7,600 millionaires, followed by Germany (5,500, 3rd), United Kingdom (4,700, 4th), France (4,100, 5th), Russia (2,800, 6th), Canada (2,600, 7th), Taiwan (2,000, 8th), Brazil (1,900, 9th), South Korea (1,900, 10th) and Hong Kong (1,500, 12th).

"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," the report said.

This is reflected in the fact that 95 per cent of the adult population has wealth below $10,000.

On the other end of the scale, a very small proportion of the population (just 0.3 per cent) has a net worth over $100,000.

Headquarters of Germany's largest business bank, Deutsche Bank, in downtown Frankfurt.

Image: Headquarters of Germany's largest business bank, Deutsche Bank, in downtown Frankfurt. Photograph: Alex Domanski/Reuters

However, due to India's large population, this translates into 2.4 million people.

In India, according to Credit Suisse, there are 1,000 adults who have wealth over $50 million and 650 people own more than $100 million.

"Residents of India are heavily concentrated in the lower wealth strata, accounting for over a quarter of people in the bottom half of the distribution.

“However, its extreme wealth inequality and immense population mean that India also has a significant number of members in the top wealth echelons," the report said.

Optare Bus built by Hinduja Group in London.

Image: Optare Bus built by Hinduja Group in London. Photograph: Kind courtesy, Optare

The report further noted that the millionaire segment would be the fastest growing group, projected to rise by 53 per cent, from 35 million today to 53 million in five years' time.

By 2019, China could see its number double to more than 2 million, while India could see a 61 per cent jump in its millionaire count which would amount to 294,000, the report said.

Substantial increases are also likely in Indonesia (64 per cent), Mexico (57 per cent), Singapore (50 per cent) and Brazil (47 per cent).

Skaters enjoy the ice on a giant ice rink at the Grand Palais exhibition hall in Paris.

Image: Skaters enjoy the ice on a giant ice rink at the Grand Palais exhibition hall in Paris. Photograph: Charles Platiau/Reuters

Although the global economic environment has remained challenging, total global wealth has grown to a new record, rising by $20.1 trillion between mid-2013 and mid-2014, to reach $263 trillion.

According to Credit Suisse estimate, globally there are 128,200 UHNW individuals, defined as those whose net worth exceeds $50 million.

Of these, 45,200 are worth at least $100 million and 4,300 have assets above $500 million.

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