Almost half of total global wealth, or about 47% of worldwide assets, are controlled by millionaires. A new Spear’s magazine and WealthInsight study offered data on individuals with over $1 million or more in net assets, excluding the value of their primary residences, as a percentage of the total population in European cities. Below we’ve gathered a list of these four European cities along with New York City, which count most millionaires per resident of cities worldwide. (For more, see: Asian Millionaires Are the Richest in the World.)
A whopping 31% of this glamorous European city state’s population is made up of millionaires. Monaco’s one millionaire out of every three Monaco residents marks the city as the mecca for most millionaires per capita. High-rollers flock to the city for the principalities’ low tax, Mediterranean waterfront location and the annual Gran Prix, boasted as one of the most prestigious automobile races in the world. Monaco has seen a fast increase in the density of its ultra-wealthy class, which spiked 6% since 2014.
This Swiss banking city ranks just behind Monaco, with approximately 25% of its inhabitants making up the millionaire class. Switzerland, which is known as a haven for wealthy individuals with fat bank accounts in search of a tax break, has sat high on the list for decades.
Geneva ranks behind its neighboring Swiss banking city, with just under 20% of its residents constituting the city’s millionaire class. This tax haven known for Swiss chocolate and watches is also home to some of the wealthiest billionaires. Gennady Timchenko, Russian founder of the international energy trader, Gunvor Group, leads the list of 13 billionaires in Geneva with a fortune of $11.4 billion. (For related reading, see: Favorite Hotels of Millionaires.)
4. New York
The city that never sleeps is up all night working for a reason, as about 5% of New Yorkers now classify as millionaires. One in 21 residents of all five New York boroughs possess over $1 million in net assets, mostly concentrated in New York’s financial and business hub of Manhattan. The Big Apple towers over other U.S. cities in the rankings, with Houston, Texas lagging behind as a home for approximately 2% of millionaires as a percentage of the overall population.
Yet another European city joins four out of five top cities for millionaires worldwide, with one in 29 inhabitants belonging to the millionaire class. Despite the recent Brexit, the capital of the United Kingdom continues to serve as a hub for finance and entrepreneurship in Europe. London’s financial strength places it ahead of Germany's financial center of Frankfurt, listed sixth on the top European millionaire city list.
The Bottom Line
When it comes to the number of millionaires as a percentage of overall city population, Europe calls itself home to a large portion of the luxury-seeking class. The sovereign city state of Monaco’s 31% millionaires over total population places it first on the millionaire list, Swiss banking cities Zurich and Geneva lag behind at 24.3% and 17.7% respectively, with New York City’s 5% and London’s 3.4% constituting the top five worldwide.