A new report by Credit Suisse Research Institute analyzed global wealth in 2015 and reported unequal distribution among populations. The very wealthy continue to reside in North America and Europe, but China’s increasing middle class outpaces other global regions.
Almost half of the world’s adult population with wealth over $1 million lived in North America. More than a third of adults throughout the world with wealth in the $100,000 to $1 million range resided in Europe, and China had the highest percentage of middle-class adults worldwide — 36 percent.
A closer look at the middle class in each global region also shows variations in size and share of adult population wealth. North America is the only global region where the middle class’s share of wealth does not exceed its adult population share, making it the only region where the middle class has less than average wealth.
For instance, 39 percent of North America’s adult population are middle class and hold 21 percent of the region’s wealth. In contrast, China’s middle-class adults make up 11 percent of the region’s total adult population and have 32 percent of the region’s wealth.