International Distribution of Billionaires


This is an addendum to my recent post on the increasing concentration of wealth in the United States.

Writing for Business Insider, Tanza Loudenback reports:

There are 1,542 billionaires in the world, according to a new report by UBS.

More than 560 billionaires live in the US—the most of any country—and they control the most wealth.

If current trends continue, the total wealth of Asia’s billionaires could overtake US billionaires in four years. . . .

Three-fourths of the world’s newly-minted billionaires from 2016 are from China and India, according to UBS. The countries added 67 and 16, respectively, to their total billionaire count.

But for now, the US maintains the world’s largest concentration of billionaire wealth. A total of 563 American billionaires control $2.8 trillion, up from $2.4 trillion last year.

Note that Loudenback is reporting that the total wealth of the billionaires in the entire continent of Asia, not from any individual Asian nation, may soon overtake the combined wealth of America’s billionaires.

Although some might want us to worry that this projection may be yet another indicator of America’s economic decline, for a whole host of reasons the combined wealth of our billionaires is not much of an indicator of our national economic vitality. (And since we are in the midst of the World Series, one might point, by analogy to the lack of any consistent correlation between most individual players’ statistics and the winning percentages of the teams on which those pitchers and hitters have played. Think of all of the great players, even Hall of Famers, who seldom, if ever, played in the World Series. Of course, there are exceptions that prove that rule—and the fact that Babe Ruth is still one of those who comes most immediately to mind further makes the point since the great 1927 Yankees team was on the field 90 years ago.)

In any case, these are the 14 countries with the most billionaires:

14. Singapore—21 Billionaires

13. Spain—25 Billionaires

12. Turkey—29 Billionaires

11. Japan—33 Billionaires

10. Switzerland—35 Billionaires

9. France—39 Billionaires

8. Italy—42 Billionaires

7. United Kingdom—55 Billionaires

6. Hong Kong—69 Billionaires

5. Russia—96 Billionaires

4. India—100 Billionaires

3. Germany—117 Billionaires

2. China—318 Billionaires

1. United States—563 Billionaires



One thought on “International Distribution of Billionaires

  1. Pingback: International Distribution of Billionaires « By the Numbers

Your comments are welcome. They must be relevant to the topic at hand and must not contain advertisements, degrade others, or violate laws or considerations of privacy. We encourage the use of your real name, but do not prohibit pseudonyms as long as you don’t impersonate a real person.