Rich get richer – Impact of stocks

Wealthy people throughout the world got wealthier in 2000 and their numbers grew, even though most stock markets fell, a new report says.

Assets of so-called “high-net-worth” individuals — those with investable assets of at least $1 million, including real estate – grew 6 percent to $27 trillion, according to the “World Wealth Report 2001” published by Merrill Lynch and Cap Gemini Ernst & Young.

The number of high-net-worth individuals grew 2.9 percent, or by 180,000, to nearly 7.2 million.

The number of “ultra-high-net-worth” individuals – those with investable assets of more than $30 million – grew 6 percent to $8.37 trillion.

The number of ultra-high-net-worth individuals grew 3 percent to an estimated 57,000.

Asia, where wealth grew more than 22 percent in 1999, posted an 18.2 percent decline in 2000, while wealth in Africa was flat.

The 5.9 percent rise in wealth in 2000 compared to an 18 percent increase in 1999 and was up 275 percent from 1986.

The report forecasts growth of 8 percent a year over the next five years – to $39.7 trillion in 2005.

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