Tuesday, 23 January 2018 16:55

Do Asia’s Billionaires Indicate Economic Global Expansion Surge?

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As previously clarified, both China and India, (Numbers 1 and 2) leaders in world population, have also gained the world’s leading position in numbers of billionaires.

Asia’s billionaires have overcome those of the U.S. for the first time, driven primarily by China, according to Swiss consulting and accounting firm, UBS Group AG.

2017 was a banner year for this expanding multitude of wealth, up 17% over 2016 to $6 trillion, greatly overcoming the percentage increase in global equity markets and world economic growth.

While the number of Asian billionaires came primarily from China and India, they far exceeded total billionaire numbers to 637 over 2016, while the U.S. increased to just 563, as Europe’s billionaire ranks remained static at 342.

In Asia, the most recent growth has been most stunning, adding a net 67 billionaires in China to 318, and India increasing by 16 to 100. Asia is well ahead of both the U.S. and Europe in youth, with China’s billionaires averaging 55 years old, more than a decade younger than their European and U.S. counterparts. Globally, the average billionaire is 63 years old, up three years from two decades ago.

Despite the U.S. falling from the top spot, it still has the most wealth concentrated among its billionaires at $8 trillion total, but according to Swiss banking giant UBS, the total wealth of billionaires in Asia could surpass that of the U.S. in the next four years.

The figures in this report were based on a database of more than 1500 billionaires. Surprisingly, much of the world’s billionaires are heavily invested among major sports franchises, including professional football, baseball, soccer, and basketball. The report further indicates that more than 140 of the top sports clubs globally are owned by just 109 billionaires. Of these, 60 derive from the U.S., 20 from Europe, and 29 from Asia. More than half of the world’s sports club purchasers have been made by billionaires in the past two years. In further clarification, the average sports baron is 68 years old, with an average wealth of $5 billion, according to the report.

Two-thirds of U.S. basketball and football franchises are owned by billionaires, as are just under half of U.S. premier league soccer clubs.

The report further states that the immense price tags on all major sports team value expansion makes it increasingly clear that it’s mostly only billionaires who have the financial firepower to buy such expanding sports franchises. Only these have the financial wherewithal to provide the necessary additional investments to keep such franchises up to date, according to the report. Remarkably, this is not only occurring in the U.S. and Europe, but is also getting more popular in Asia. This emphasizes that the huge value generated by both public interest and team values are gaining immense interest globally.

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Morrie Beschloss

Morris R. Beschloss is a global economic analyst, award-winning long-term top business executive, and avid blogger.

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