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Fast route to prosperity, say Middle East’s wealthy

Rory Gilbert, Managing Director and Head of Wealth and Investment Management, Barclays

High net worth individuals in the Middle East have a more positive outlook

June 17, 2013 3:53 by

When compared to any other market around the world, high net worth individuals (HNWIs) in the Middle East are more confident about the ‘increasing speed of wealth creation’ – with more than 50 per cent of them saying their level of wealth had increased during the recent financial turmoil.

According to the latest edition of Barclays’ Wealth Insights, roughly 60 per cent of respondents in the region agreed that wealth can be created faster today than in the past – compared to only 43 per cent in Europe and 31 per cent in North America. Interestingly, more than half  of participants stated that personal investments have contributed largely to overall wealth portfolio, compared to other sources of income, such as inheritance at 49 per cent.

The report, released today and based on a global survey of more than 2,000 HNWIs, comprising entrepreneurs, investors and business leaders, substantiates that HNWIs in the Middle East and North Africa (Mena) region tend to have a more positive view of setbacks and are more persistent in overcoming adversity.

The report navigates the global landscape of wealth, examining how different cultures prepare for the future and consider their legacy through wealth and inheritance planning and philanthropy.

In the rapid growth economies of the Middle East, nearly three quarters (73 per cent) of respondents have accumulated the majority of their wealth in less than 20 years. In terms of how this wealth is used, HNWIs in the Middle East have a tendency to allocate more of their resources to personal property than to tangible assets and collectibles.

On average, respondents in the region currently hold their wealth largely in personal property (30 per cent of wealth), followed by investments (23 per cent) and cash savings (20 per cent). By contrast, just 13 per cent of wealth is held in tangible assets.

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