Move Over U.S. & New York, Now China & Beijing Have More Billionaires

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Feb 25 2016
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China has been hitting the news for the wrong reasons – economic slowdown, stock market meltdown, corruption crackdown, and billionaires’ disappearance. However, like its factories, the country assembly lines are producing billionaires faster than any other countries, including United States. Now, China has more billionaires than America.

China Has Most Billionaires - Cyclist Navigate Rolls Royce

According to China-based wealth research firm – Hurun Global Rich List – the country now has a staggering 568 billionaires as compared to United States’ 535. The city of Beijing added an unbelievable 32 new billionaires last year alone, bringing the city’s total to 100. This is more than New York City which has only 95 billionaires after added 4 new billionaires.


Wang Jianlin of Dalian Wanda was the top Beijing resident on the list with a net worth of US$26 billion. David Koch and Michael Bloomberg topped the list of New York billionaires. Due to their different methodology, however, Hurun Report and the Forbes produce different results. Based on Forbes’ calculation, China has only 335 billionaires while the U.S. has 536.

Wang Jianlin - China’s Richest Man – US$26 Billion

Rupert Hoogewerf, the founder of Hurun, said his wealth calculations were made using stock prices as of January 15 this year, which means they took into account the Chinese market’s 40% tumble over the past half year. He said China had a particularly high proportion of self-made billionaires compared to the United States.


Apparently, the founder of Hurun attributed China’s explosive wealth creation to Chinese market regulators allowing a flood of new IPO (initial public offerings) after holding back them for several years. Hurun also claims that China’s billionaire population first surpassed the U.S. in August last year.

China Has Most Billionaires - IPO Initial Public Offering Stock Prices

Mainland China, Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan provided 90 new billionaires that helped push China for the title with 568 billionaires. The total net worth of China billionaires reached US$1.4 trillion. Wang Jianlin’s fortune of US$26 billion surpassed Li Ka-shing, Hong Kong’s property tycoon who was once the richest man in Asia, after Li’s net worth shrank 22% to US$25 billion.


Based on Hurun methodology and calculations, there are now 2,188 billionaires globally, up 99 from 2014 and marking a new record. After the city of Beijing and New York, Moscow came in third place (66 billionaires), while Hong Kong and Shanghai came in fourth and fifth with 64 and 50 billionaires respectively.

Wealthy Chinese Women at Cartier

Rupert Hoogewerf has this to say to people who doubted Hurun Global Rich List. China actually has more billionaires that could be published because for every billionaire that Hurun Report has found, an estimated two have been missed. That’s because some didn’t want their wealth to be made public as they gained them “illegally”.


There’re also some Chinese billionaires who prefer to keep a low profile. Still, the report said China has the largest number of billionaires under age 40, with 28. The country also has the largest number of self-made women, with 93 of 124 self-made women billionaires globally. Which sectors should one look at to become super rich in China?

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So far, China’s billionaires made their wealth primarily in the real estate which has produced 117 billlionaires. Next is manufacturing, created 94 billionaires while technology produced 68 billionaires. Rupert Hoogewerf predicts next batch of billionaires would come from the financial investment, manufacturing and technology sectors.


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