Wealth

These Cities Have the Most Billionaires in the World

Only 15 cities account for over 30 percent of the world's billionaire population.
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Though it seems a rising number of high net worth individuals are migrating to Australia, new research reveals the world's billionaires haven't given up on major cities such as New York, Hong Kong, and San Francisco. In fact, it's quite the opposite, as these cities have been found to have the highest concentration of billionaires in the world.

The sixth edition of Wealth-X's Billionaire Census found the global billionaire population significantly declined in 2018. Due to a slowdown in global growth, trade tensions, and a slump in equity markets, billionaire wealth declined by seven percent and the population by 5.4 percent. One of its more interesting findings, however, is that billionaires are increasingly congregating in a cluster of cities.

Leading the findings is New York with more billionaires than almost every other city in the world. Still, while New York has the largest billionaire population at 105 individuals, San Francisco has more billionaires as a percentage of its population than all those cities on the list. Wealth-X found that there was one billionaire for approximately 11,600 residents in the California city. In this aspect, New York, Dubai, and Hong Kong follow with around one billionaire per 80,000-85,000 inhabitants.

Hong Kong, with a total of 87 billionaires, came in second after losing six individuals in 2018, while San Francisco and Moscow added one billionaire each. San Francisco's rise has been attributed to the wealth gains in the technology sectors. Moscow, on the other hand, benefitted from rising investments and higher oil prices.

The drop in billionaire population is of particular interest since it's only been the second time it's declined since the global recession of 2009. Several countries excluding the U.S., U.K., Russia, and France experienced a decline. The top Asia-Pacific countries, specifically, recorded falls in both their billionaire population and net worth. According to the research, the falls in China and Hong Kong were a result of the "U.S.-China trade war, softer Chinese demand, emerging-market volatility, and weakening global growth."

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Paolo Chua
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