Globe and Mail Update Last updated on Tuesday, Sep. 15, 2009 11:13AM EDT
http://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-o ... le1288141/
Europe has elbowed North America aside to become the wealthiest region in the world, a report said Tuesday.
It is the first time Europe has reigned over the global wealth ranking since 2003. Globally, wealth fell for the first time in seven years, to $92.4-trillion (U.S.) in 2008 from $104.7-trillion a year earlier, according to The Boston Consulting Group's annual publication.
The crisis is transforming the global map of the world's wealthiest people, the paper said.
Hammered by equity losses, North America saw the steepest decline in wealth last year, with a 21.8-per-cent plunge in assets under management.
Latin America was the only region where wealth actually increased last year. Its assets under management increased 3 per cent in 2008. The region's political and economic structures have evolved considerably in recent years, and the area had relatively little exposure to the U.S. real-estate market, the report said.
The number of millionaires around the world has fallen. Millionaire households fell by 17.8 per cent to 9 million last year, with the sharpest declines in North America and Europe. The United States still has the most millionaire households in the world though nearly 4 million.
Singapore had the highest concentration of millionaires, with 8.5 per cent of the country's households possessing more than $1-million. In Europe, Switzerland has the highest concentration of millionaires. Switzerland also remained the world's largest offshore centre last year.
Wealth will begin a slow recovery in 2010 but may not reach its pre-crisis level until 2013, said Peter Damisch, a BCG partner and a co-author of the report.
He predicted wealth will grow at an average annual rate of about 4 per cent from year-end 2008 through 2013, with the fastest growth rates in the Asia-Pacific region, excluding Japan.
The U.S. remains by far the wealthiest country on the planet, followed by Japan, the report said.
Despite last year's plunge, North America continues to have the largest share of wealth held in equities. The consulting group defines North America as Canada and the U.S.
The wealth estimates were calculated in local currencies and converted into U.S. dollars using end-of-year 2008 exchange rates.
"Patriotism is your conviction that this country is superior to all other countries because you were born in it."
George Bernard Shaw
eastern europe is still only at ~25% of west
Napoleon auf St. Helena: "Hätte der Himmel gewollt, dass ich als deutscher Fürst geboren wäre und hätten Sie mich einmal zu Ihrem Kaiser gewählt und ausgerufen so scheint mir noch Heute, dass Sie nie von mir abgefallen wären und ich Heute nicht hier sitzen müsste."