Once again Switzerland tops the list of the world's highest average wealth with $561,854 worth of assets per adult. Since the turn of the century, household wealth in Switzerland has increased by 44% in terms of local currency, according to the Global Wealth Report 2016 by the Credit Suisse Research Institute.
Even though the Swiss experienced a drop in wealth of $27,000 per adult over the past year, it still remains on top by large margins. Australia came in second, with $375,573 per adult; the U.S. was third, at $344,692 per adult.
Switzerland also comes out on top in the ranking of highest median wealth – a measure favorable to countries with less income inequality – with $244,002 per adult. Following Switzerland are Australia, Belgium, New Zealand and Norway. In this ranking the U.S. dropped to 23rd place, with a median wealth measured at $44,977 per adult.
Switzerland – famous for banking, as well as mountains and chocolate – holds about 55% of its wealth in financial assets, which is more than in the U.K., but less than Japan and the U.S., according to the report. In absolute terms, it has one of the highest levels of debt, averaging $143,400 per adult. However, that debt amounts to only 20% of total assets per Swiss adult.
The report also states that almost two-thirds of Swiss adults have assets worth more than $100,000 (more than double the median in the U.S.), and 12% of the Swiss are millionaires in terms of the U.S. dollar.
The Swiss also account for 2.3% of the top 1% of global wealth-holders – a remarkable number given the small size of the nation, the authors of the report note.