Billionaires worldwide still parking their wealth in real estate: census

Also the primary industry of Chinese billionaires


The proportion of billionaires’ wealth held in real estate and luxury assets remained virtually the same in 2018, according to the new Billionaire Census by intelligence provider Wealth-X.

Billionaires allocated 2.2 percent of their holdings last year in real estate and luxury assets — which include such possessions as yachts, airplanes, cars, jewelry and art — a slight dip from 2.3 percent in 2017.

The latest figures are equivalent to about USD71 million in luxury holdings per individual.

“Real estate, food and beverages, and manufacturing comprise the remaining top five primary industries, together accounting for a fifth of all billionaires,” Wealth-X researchers stated.

More: Singapore home to most real estate billionaires in Southeast Asia

“All have benefited from long-term global population growth, the continued trend towards urbanization, the rapid expansion of the middle class in many emerging markets, and the recent shift in consumer demand toward greater convenience, spurred by the increasing adoption of digitalisation around the world,” they added.

Around 14.5 percent of billionaires in China are engaged in real estate, making it their primary industry. It ranks third overall globally, accounting for 7.6 percent of billionaires, next to industrial conglomerates at 13.1 percent and banking and finance (20.7 percent).

“Real estate, industrial conglomerates and manufacturing are the leading billionaire industries, reflecting the economy’s specializations,” Wealth-X reported.

Technology is also an important primary industry, “shining a light on Chinese companies’ increasing influence at the global stage,” the consultancy added.