More than 300,000 people joined Asia’s dollar millionaire ranks last year swelling the combined wealth of the region’s mega-rich to £7.5 trillion.

The number was 9.4% up on 2012 to 3.68 million people, according to a survey by CapGemini and Royal Bank of Canada.

Economic growth, strong stock markets, rising property prices and the region’s high savings rates helped boost fortunes.

The report defines wealthy as those with at least $1 million (£630,000) in liquid assets. It covered ten Asian countries and territories including China, Japan, Australia and South Korea.

Asia was surpassed only by North America, where the millionaire population grew 11.5 percent to 3.73 million.

Asia’s millionaire population outnumbered Europe’s for the first time in 2009, and in 2011 it edged out North America for top spot, according to previous editions of the report. The report’s authors forecast that Asia would reclaim its crown as soon as 2014.

The superrich, defined as those worth at least £19million, grew even faster than the millionaire population at large.

Their ranks in Asia grew 15.4 percent last year to 25,000 while combined wealth rose 18 percent, about double the global average.

Earlier this month, the Hurun Report, which tracks China’s wealthy, said surging stock prices helped mint 64 new billionaires this year, raising the total number to 315, compared with none a decade ago.

At about the same time, Wealth-X, which follows the world’s wealthy, said Asia’s superrich population grew four per cent to 44,505.

Eric Lascelles, RBC asset management’s chief economist, chalked up some of the rebound in the fortunes of the superrich to more aggressive investments, which tend to get hit harder in downturns and rise more rapidly on the rebound.

He said: ‘Equally we need to acknowledge that globalisation over the past few decades has increased inequality to some extent.

‘We have seen rates of poverty decline quite nicely over that period as well but that’s not to say that wealth or incomes have risen as quickly in the lower end as it has in the higher end.’

source:  dailymail