According Wealth-X’s Global Outlook For 2020 the coming year is set to be a solid year of expansion for the global wealthy population and their respective worth. For a market that largely continues to depend on the charter industry as its entry point for future ownership, growth in the number of wealthy individuals worldwide, not just within the ultra-high-net-worth designation, can only be positive.

“This follows a very strong, but somewhat unanticipated performance in 2019, largely of the back of substantial gains in the equities market,” explains the report. “The outlook for the wealthy improved over the last few months of 2019, yet worries remain over febrile global economic growth, including ongoing trade tensions, geopolitical uncertainty and unpredictable policy making.”

According to the data provided in the report, the number of individuals with a net worth between $1m-5m grew from 20,066,480 in 2018 to 22,424,000 in 2019, representing an increase of 11.7 per cent. Wealth-X forecasts that this wealth segment is due to continue growing, albeit at a slower rate, predicting that 2020 will see a further 4.8 per cent increase to 23,504,710. Similar growth patterns are expected of the very-high-net-worth community ($5m-30m) and the ultra-high-net-worth designation ($30m+), which will see growth increases of 5.5 per cent and 5.3 per cent respectively from 2019-2020.

Wealth-X’s central view over the next five years is for continued modest growth of the wealthy in the US, the world’s largest wealth market. However, Wealth-X caveats its central position by outlining the considerable amount of uncertainty in the US tied to geopolitical and trade tensions, the leveraged corporate debt market and inflationary pressure, to which you might add the ongoing impeachment trial of president Donald Trump and the upcoming US election. Nevertheless, even in the event of a recession, Wealth-X predicts that impact to the economy will be moderate, after which steady growth in the US’s wealthy population will continue again.

While the superyacht market quite rightly continues to work on various models and methods to attract new generations and demographics of charter guests and superyacht owners, the most bountiful source of clients remains in the US and, given that year-on-year the US is producing more newly wealthy individuals that any other nation, it makes perfect sense that many superyacht enterprises are mostly focussing their energies in the states rather than looking further afield. Indeed, if Wealth-X’s central forecast proves to be accurate, then the market’s dependency on the US is only likely to depen.

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