UBS has done a comprehensive study and analysis of the global ultra-rich population for the year 2014. They call it the “Billionaire Census.” The study provides helpful and useful information and insights into the top-tier wealthy people throughout the world. Information regarding the very wealthy can fluctuate from one year to the next.
1. There are 2,324 billionaires around the world, and when combined their total worth is U.S. $7.3 trillion. The number of billionaires has increased 12% from last year. They control about 4% of the wealth in the world.
2. New York City has the most billionaire residents than any other city. Many of these New York City billionaires have lives centered in finance and work on Wall Street. Other cities with high concentrations of billionaires are Moscow, Hong Kong, and London.
3. Since 2013, 155 new individuals have joined the ranks of billionaires.
4. The highest percentages of billionaires fall in the age group of 55-64 year olds. The average age of billionaires is 63 years old, and 93% of the world’s billionaire population is over 45. One exception is Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg, age 30. He is worth $34 billion.
5. On average it takes about 45 years to become a billionaire. It takes time, hard work and some luck to get there.
6. Billionaires donate over U.S $100 M to philanthropy. Bill Gates, the richest person in the world, is giving money away to bring about social change in health and education. His foundation has donated $30 million since the year 2,000.
7.University degrees have been earned by 65% of billionaires, but 35% do not have a degree. Many billionaires have chosen Ivy League schools like the University of Pennsylvania, Harvard, and Yale. It is surprising that 35% didn’t complete an undergraduate degree.
8.81 per cent of billionaires have made a majority of their money by their own efforts. Others (13%) reached billionaire status simply by inheritance, and 26.9% reinvested inherited wealth. An example of a self-made billionaire is Larry Elison. He worked for 8 years doing odd jobs before starting his successful company, Oracle.
9. It is predicted that the world-wide billionaire population will grow to over 3,800 by the year 2020.The numbers are expected to grow in all regions of the world, but higher growth will occur in Asia. The U.S. is expected to still have the highest number for a country.
10.Billionaires belong to good-sized social networks. On average, three of their connections are also billionaires. Most billionaires enjoy similar lifestyles. They are accustomed to using networking to achieve their goals.