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Now Asians are wealthy then Europeans.

The wealth of rich Asians has surpassed Europe's millionaires for the first time as the region's stock and property prices rebounded from the global recession, a report showed on Wednesday.

The wealth of Asia's high net worth individuals — those with liquid assets of at least $1 million — jumped 31 per cent last year to $9.7 trillion, surpassing Europe's $9.5 trillion, according to a report by Merrill Lynch Wealth Management and Capgemini. For the first time, the size of Asia's rich population equaled that of Europe at 3 million.

"The star performer was Asia-Pacific, the only region in which both macroeconomic and market drivers of wealth expanded significantly in 2009," the report said.

Asian wealth was bolstered by a regional economy that expanded 4.5 per cent in 2009 despite global GDP contracting 2 per cent. Hong Kong, India and China led the wealth growth as property and stock markets in these countries surged last year after sharp falls in 2008.

North America is still the wealthiest region, with 3.1 million rich worth $10.7 trillion, the report said.

Globally, the wealth of the rich grew 19 per cent last year to $39 trillion, with North American wealth increasing 18 per cent while Europe was up 14 per cent, the report said.

The wealth of Latin America's rich rose 15 per cent to $6.7 trillion, the Middle East increased 5.1 per cent to $1.5 trillion and Africa gained 20 per cent to $1 trillion.

Src & Text: [profit.ndtv]

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