ECONOMY | Staff Reporter, Singapore

Singapore millionaires getting richer despite global recession

70% of those surveyed by Royal Skandia said their wealth had risen between 2008 and the end of 2011.

A survey of Singapore millionaires and high net worth individuals found their wealth had increased significantly in the past three years despite the deep global economic turmoil since 2008.

The study, which was carried out by the offshore investment specialist Royal Skandia, also found that of the wealthy Singaporeans polled, 63% had university degrees and of those, some 43% graduated from the National University of Singapore. A further 17% graduated either from Singapore Polytechnic, Nanyang Technological University or Monash University in Australia.

While NUS graduates dominated the survey, the statistics produced by Royal Skandia also found that most of those individuals categorized as millionaires have seen their wealth grow significantly during the current recession. 70% of those surveyed said their wealth had risen between 2008 and the end of 2011 with some 10% reporting an increase in their wealth by 50% or more in that period.

The Royal Skandia survey was conducted in the first quarter of 2012 and was one of several carried out by the investment specialist of millionaires in the Asia region. For the purposes of this survey, a millionaire or High Net Worth Individual is somebody with more than US$1 million in liquid assets and not including the value of a primary ‘home; property.

Significantly, nine out of ten Singaporean millionaires reported that they accumulated their wealth through work as opposed to inheritance or personal stock trading. Successful investment strategies or 78% and owning a business or 29% were cited as the next most significant opportunities which could enable wealth generation.

Only 21% stated their wealth was as a result of inheritance, 19% gained a wealthy status through marriage whereas 8% won their wealth through a lottery.

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