Global Growth In Billionaires Led By China

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That was more than the total wealth of the 3.5 billion people in the planet's bottom half.

The world's richest person is Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, who has an estimated net worth of United States dollars 146 billion, more than any one person in history.

China saw unprecedented growth among its wealthiest, minting two billionaires each week a year ago. Now in its fifth edition, the report draws on UBS and PWC's extensive client network and access to data, and aims to promote a deeper understanding of the billionaire population globally.

The number of Chinese billionaires has risen to 373 in 2017 from 318 in 2016.

"Opportunities in new emerging industries and technologies turn out to be very important, so much so that the downward shift in China's real GDP growth since the global financial crisis has not been a significant hindrance to billionaire creation", said Wyatt.

A new report from investment bank UBS and professional services firm PwC has found the world's richest people upped their wealth by nearly a fifth in 2017, with British billionaires upping their income by a quarter.

The number of billionaires around the global also increased, from 1,979 in 2016 to 2,158 previous year.

However, the report also estimated that if the ongoing trade dispute between the United States and China escalates to an all-out trade war, both countries could see significantly lower economic growth before policy responses.

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But Chinese billionaires expanded their wealth at almost double that pace, growing by 39 percent to $1.12 trillion.

China's 400 wealthiest people have already lost a combined US$130 billion from their fortunes in the past year, according to Forbes' 2018 China Rich List, published on Thursday.

It added that over little more than a decade, they had created some of the world's largest companies, raised living standards and made fortunes at an unprecedented pace.

This incident, along with the recent show trials and tribulations of Chinese executives, shows that while the country has ramped up its production of new billionaires, the megarich and the bankers who chase them face a far more complex and uncertain future than their Western counterparts.

'But this is just the beginning.

About 97% of China's billionaires are self-made, with the majority working in sectors such as tech or retail. Asia has 711 billionaires, compared to 631 in North America. "This cohort is overwhelmingly self-made and determined to capitalise on one of history's greatest moments for new enterprise".

The Americas region was still home to the highest concentration of billionaire wealth in 2017, although wealth creation in the region was reported to be slowing.