1 million rich Gulf families own wealth worth $1.2 trillion: Report

Dubai

One million wealthy families in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries own investment assets worth about USD 1.2 trillion, a new report has said.

The KFH-Research report about wealth and funds management said that the world's population of high net worth individuals (HNWIs) grew by a marginal 0.8 per cent year on year to 11 million in 2011. This pace was sluggish compared to growth

rates of 17.1 per cent in 2009 and 8.3 per cent in 2010.

The aggregate financial wealth of these HNWIs also declined by 1.7 per cent to USD 42 trillion in 2011, mainly due to challenging global macroeconomic conditions and volatile global financial markets, the report said.

This rate of growth in 2011 was much slower than 18.9 per cent clocked in 2009 and 9.7 per cent logged in 2010 given the significant rebound from crisis-related losses post the global financial crisis, it added.

Asia Pacific was the star performer, which saw the number of HNWIs in the region rise by 1.6 per cent year on year to 3.37 million individuals in 2011 -- the first time that as a region Asia Pacific surpassed North America in terms of HNWIs. However in terms of asset values, the financial wealth of Asia Pacific HNWIs stood at USD 10.7 trillion in 2011, aslight decline of 1.1 per cent. In 2011, Hong Kong and India were hit by declines in their equity markets' capitalisation. In Hong Kong, concerns on the European sovereign debt crisis weighed on the outlook for growth.

Meanwhile in India, sentiments were subdued due to factors including perceived slow pace of domestic reforms.

Elsewhere in Singapore, financial wealth was impacted by the sharp drop in export revenues. In contrast, Thailand's financial wealth rose on the back of significant real estate gains as well as a solid growth performance, the report said.

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