According to the report, the assets of the 36 Swiss billionaires increased by 19 percent previous year to 123.5 billion US dollars, driven by bullish financial markets. There are fewer billionaires in Britain but their accumulated wealth has soared to more than £200 billion. "But this is just the beginning", said Josef Stadler, head of ultra-high net worth at UBS wealth management.
The rich got richer than ever before past year, with China leading the way.
Currently, there are 2,158 billionaires.
Ravi Raju, head of Asia Pacific ultra high-net-worth at UBS Global Wealth Management, said: "Asia's billionaires are young and relentless".
The top three industries where Chinese billionaires made their money are real estate, technology, and consumer and retail. The US created 53 billionaires in 2017, compared with 87 in 2012.
The growth was fastest in Asia, with China minting roughly one new billionaire every three days.
"Powered by the rise of China's entrepreneurs in an exceptional year, the number of Asian billionaires rose by nearly a quarter to 637", it said.
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Over the past five years, the sum passed by deceased billionaires to beneficiaries has grown by an average of 17 per cent each year, to reach United States dollars 117 bn in 2017. While 106 Chinese became new billionaires a year ago, 51 were dropped from the list as their net worth fell below $1 billion.
About 97% of Chinese billionaires are considered self-made, and, at 56 years old on average, they're about a decade younger than their North American counterparts. "Supported by rapid urbanization and productivity growth, they are leveraging technology to revolutionize the country's service sector, as well as growing business in area such as AI and healthcare". "This cohort is overwhelmingly self-made and determined to capitalise on one of history's greatest moments for new enterprise".
The UBS report concludes, "A major wealth transition has begun". This year, however, has seen stock markets decline worldwide over interest rate increases in the US and emerging market volatility, only to be exacerbated by tensions surrounding the US-China trade war.
Of those who inherited a family business, 62 per cent globally went on to start entrepreneurial ventures, compared to 42 per cent of those who inherited assets. 179 new billionaires were created a year ago. Further, billionaires are embracing sustainable investing, seeing how it not only does good, but also adds value in their businesses.
But Chinese billionaires expanded their wealth at almost double that pace, growing by 39 percent to $1.12 trillion.
These mega-rich increased their wealth by a $1.4 trillion which is more than the entire GDP of Spain or Australia.