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Russia gained $600bn total wealth last year, Swiss report claims

Russians increased their wealth significantly in 2022 amid the Ukraine war, while the US and Europe lost trillions of dollars, a new report has alleged.

The claims were made in the annual Global Wealth Report by the Swiss bank UBS Financial Services, which was released earlier this week. The report said that many countries and regions lost out on wealth last year, with a small handful of exceptions, including Russia – even as it was embroiled in the Ukraine war.

“According to our calculations, the main exceptions were Russia (up USD 600 billion), Mexico (up USD 655 billion), India (up USD 675 billion) and Brazil (up USD 1.1 trillion),” it reads, though it acknowledges that “wealth trends in Russia are difficult to determine at this time.”

The Swiss bank adds that the number of Russian millionaires rose by about 56,000 to 408,000 last year, and that the number of Russian “ultra-high-net-worth” individuals (people worth over $50 million) rose by almost 4,500.

Meanwhile, the number of millionaires in America dropped by around 1 million by the end of 2022.

The report goes on to say that North America and Europe together lost almost $11 trillion last year.

“Regionally, the loss of global wealth was heavily concentrated in wealthier regions such as North America and Europe, which together shed USD 10.9 trillion,” the report reads.

“Heading the list of losses in 2022 is the United States, which shed USD 5.9 trillion. This compares to a rise of USD 19.5 trillion a year earlier and is the first break in a remarkable sequence of gains dating back to the global financial crisis.”

It says that overall global wealth declined last year for the first time since 2008.

“2022 recorded the first fall in net global household wealth since the global financial crisis of 2008,” the Swiss bank said, calling this a “significant setback in the accumulation of
wealth in the household sector.”

One possible explanation for Russia’s alleged wealth increase despite Western sanctions is a rise in the price of oil – a key export for the Russian economy.


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