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6 New Stats About Wealth in the U.S.

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Related: 20 Cities With the Most Millionaires: 2022

Aggregate global wealth totaled $463.6 trillion at the end of 2021, a year-over-year rise of 9.8%, according to a new report from Credit Suisse Research Institute. Wealth per adult grew by 8.4% to reach $87,489 at year-end.

Set aside exchange rate movement, and aggregate global wealth grew by 12.7%, the fastest annual rate ever recorded, and wealth per adult by 11.3%.

The bumper year for household wealth was driven by widespread gains in share prices and a favorable environment created by central bank policies in 2020 to lower interest rates, but at the cost of inflationary pressures.

Credit Suisse noted that rises in interest rates in 2022 have already had an adverse effect on bond and share prices, and are also likely to hamper investment in nonfinancial assets. Inflation and higher interest rates could slow household wealth growth in the near term even if nominal GDP rises at the relatively rapid pace predicted for this year.

All regions contributed to the rise in global wealth last year, but North America accounted for a little over half the global total and China added another quarter. In contrast, Africa, Europe, India and Latin America together accounted for just 11.1% of global wealth growth.

“On a country basis, the U.S. added the most household wealth in 2021, followed by China, Canada, India and Australia, Anthony Shorrocks, the report’s author, said in a statement. “Wealth losses were less common and almost always associated with currency depreciation against the U.S. dollar.

“Analysis of median wealth within countries and across the world shows that global wealth inequality has fallen this century due to faster growth achieved in emerging markets. The average household has thus been able to build up wealth over the last two decades.”

See the gallery for six new statistics about wealth in the U.S.