Rich people are raising the stakes.
The wealthy are now keeping more of their money in stocks than any other asset class, according to a new report out Wednesday that offers a glimpse into the investing habits and concerns of the ultra-rich.
Stocks beat out cash last year to take the number one slot, according to the annual World Wealth Report by Capgemini and RBC Wealth Management, which looks at people with $1 million or more to invest.
The share of assets held in stocks increased to 27 percent last year from 26 percent in 2013. Meanwhile, the portion held in cash, which investors said they viewed as important to maintaining their lifestyles, dropped to 26 percent from 28 percent over that same time period. Here’s a graph showing the total breakdown:
The shift into equities offers a few lessons about how the rich are managing their money. It’s worth noting that some of that increase might just be a sign that the wealthy enjoyed some of the gains we saw in the stock market last year. The S&P 500 stock index gained 11 percent last year, and anyone invested in the market would have seen their assets grow and take up a bigger portion of their portfolio.
It is also a sign that after witnessing roughly six years of gains, investors finally may be getting more comfortable with the idea of investing in stocks. There’s no telling how much higher the market could go, though. While stocks are still climbing — and have nearly tripled from the low in 2009 — movement in the market has been a little more flat in recent months.
Some more good news tucked into the report: More people are getting rich. The number of people with at least $1 million grew by close to one million last year to 14.6 million people, the study found. (That included 920,000 new millionaires, to be exact.) A third of those new millionaires live in the U.S.
Total wealth held around the globe grew to $56.4 trillion. The biggest chunk of that wealth is still in North America, which has $16.2 trillion in wealth. But the bulk of the growth was seen in Asia-Pacific, which saw wealth grow by 11 percent to $15.8 trillion.
Total global wealth is expected to top $70.5 trillion by 2017.