The West

Millionaire middle class seen growing

Australia's millionaire middle class grew sharply again last year, fattened by stronger equity markets, according to the Boston Consulting Group (BGC).

He group's annual Global Wealth Report shows the number of millionaire households jumped 28 per cent to 195,000, outpacing the 14 per cent growth in national wealth to $3.3 trillion.

The head of the firm's Australasian financial services practice, Andrew Dyer, cited the emergence of the new millionaire middle-class, with wealth controlled by households worth $1 million to $5 million, excluding the family home, rising 25.9 per cent in 2013.

Mr Dyer said this new millionaire middle class now controlled almost as much wealth as Australia's rich elite.

"Australia's richest one per cent of households owned 17.5 per cent of all wealth in 2008, but this steadily declined to 13.8 per cent in 2013," Mr Dyer said.

"Over the same period, households in the $1 million to $5 million segment have increased their share of total wealth from 8.1 per cent to 10.1 per cent."

Globally, wealth grew by 14.6 per cent last year to $US152.0 trillion thanks to strong equity markets and the creation of new wealth in rapidly developing economies, notably China.

On a regional basis, Asia-Pacific (excluding Japan) posted the strongest growth, up 30.5 per cent, while Eastern Europe rose 17.2 per cent, North America 15.6 per cent, the Middle East and Africa 11.6 per cent and Latin America 11.1 per cent.

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