The top 100,000 people in the world with very high net worth — at least $30 million to invest — lost money in 2011. They are down an estimated 5%.
They are not yet in bread lines, of course. But it reminds us that the capital markets are unpredictable. There can be down years, even for the rich.
Meanwhile, the news from Asia is that Asia now has slightly more millionaires than North America does. Of course, there are far more people in Asia.
The total number is about 3.4 million people with at least $1 million to invest.
This is the first time Asia rated first — just barely.
Their total wealth was down 1.1%: to $10.7 trillion.
North Americans had a little more wealth: $11.4 trillion. This was down 2.3%
Europe was third: 3.2 million of these people, with $10.1 trillion.
So, there are about 11 million people with over $1 million to invest. Their total net worth was $42 trillion.
The fact that there are now more millionaires in Asia than in North America does not make North Americans poorer. When others get rich, we all should rejoice. Envy should not motivate us: the desire to pull down successful people.
It is always better to trade with successful people than with unsuccessful people. They have more to trade.