In today’s topic, we will research which the wealthiest countries in the world ranked by financial assets are.
There are a lot of ways and criteria by which we could be looking for the richest country in the world or list the top 100 richest countries in the world. One of those could be done by GDP for example (as you can check out at 25 Richest Countries in the World by 2017 GDP). Then we could look for the richest governments in the world, where we would find USA, China, Germany, Japan, France, and the UK among the top, according to CIA World Factbook. Other rankings could be based on a physical property such as natural resources, and you can check out the research we have already done on this matter in 15 Richest Countries in the World by Natural Resources.
So, unlike natural resources, financial assets do not represent a physical property (although might be in the form of cash for example). They are rather referred to as “liquid assets” meaning their value depends on a contractual claim. Examples of financial assets are cash as we have already put, varieties of contractual rights, share certificates, stocks, bonds, bank deposits, insurance policies and pension funds, or equity stakes.
According to the publication by World Bank, actually, in most countries the largest share of wealth comes from the intangible capital, in which category we also can put financial assets as well. For example, these are the foreign financial assets, “When a country receives interest on the foreign bonds it owns, this boosts consumption and hence total wealth and the intangible capital residual” as stated in the cited publication.
Since 2015 the financial asset growth was +4.7%; the global growth of financial assets in 2017 reached a peak of +7.1% being at record EUR 169.2 trillion. The most growth of financial assets per capita has been accomplished in Asia with 11% (mostly because of Chinese economic expansion and the growth of financial assets by 30% in 2016), followed by Eastern Europe and Latin America with 5%. On the other hand, North America and Europe have shown much lower figures, 2.1%, and 1.4% respectively since 2006.
That is a normal situation, having substantial assets in wealthier countries already existing, so it is to be expected that the financial assets would grow slower in these countries. And also, looking at the global financial share, it is to be expected that wealthier regions have the most. Hence, the North American region has 45% of global financial assets share, followed by Asia with 28.1% and Western Europe with 20% share, while Latin America and Eastern Europe for example, are way behind with only 2% and 1.4% of financial assets share respectively.
So, we have been researching for some statistics and figures in order to make a decent overview of the wealthiest countries in the world by financial assets. Allianz had made a raking of global financial assets per capita which was the main source for our research in order to find out which the wealthiest countries in the world by financial assets are. The data comes from 2017 and represents the most comprehensive and uniform data, given in EUR values. That was also the information we have provided on our list.
Had we been making the list of countries by net worth situation might have been quite little different than what you will see further on our today’s list. So for example, according to total net worth, at the first place here would be the USA, followed by China, Japan, UK, and Germany. And naturally, here it might seem legit to ask is China the richest country in the world, or actually is it on a good way to become that since it has been developing very rapidly lately in every sense, but let’s put this discussion for another time.
Now, focusing on the wealthiest countries in the world ranked by financial assets, let’s see which they are:
Net per capita financial assets in EUR: 54,530
Although being among the wealthiest countries in the world ranked by net per capita financial assets, Italy has only seen 0.3% financial asset growth which is way below the Western European average of 4.7% in 2016.