Beijing Is Billionaire Capital Of The World, Beats New York

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According to the latest research more billionaires now live in the Chinese capital of Beijing than previous titleholder New York City.

There are now 100 billionaires living in Beijing according to Hurun, a Shanghai-based company that releases yearly data on the world’s rich and their spending habits. By comparison there are now “only” 95 billionaires living in New York, writes Gerry Shih for USA Today.

Beijing billionaires continue to accrue vast wealth

The results of the study follow hot on the heels of other research which claims that more billionaires live in China than in the United States. It also shows that despite ongoing problems with the domestic stock market and a general economic slowdown, rich Chinese are continuing to make huge amounts of money.

The Hurun Report and other rankings of the world’s richest people generally kick up different results due to their varying methodology. The Forbes list, for example, looks slightly different. Rupert Hoogewerf, the founder of Hurun, says that the rapid expansion of Chinese wealth can be explained by a raft of initial public offerings. Authorities had previously imposed a ban on IPOs.

Hoogewerf said that he calculated the wealth of the individuals using stock prices as of 15 January. As a result the list does take into account the nosedive suffered by the Chinese market in the past six months.

Self-made billionaires dominate in China

Had the list been published before the crash, there would have been almost 150 Chinese billionaires. As it stands Beijing takes the title of billionaire capital of the world after 32 new billionaires were made in the city last year, compared to 4 in New York.

In third place on the list is Moscow, where 66 billionaires live. Hong Kong came fourth with 64 billionaires, and Shanghai fifth with 50.

On the global rich list Chinese real estate magnate Wang Jianlin came in 21st. He was beaten out by the family that owns Wal-Mart, the Swedish family that owns Ikea and Jorge Paulo Lemann, a Brazilian investor. The global top 100 also included other Chinese billionaires such as Alibaba founder Jack Ma, beverage billionaire Zong Qinghou, and the bosses of Xiaomi, Tencent and Baidu.

China also has a high proportion of self-made billionaires compared to the United States, said Hoogewerf. “What we showed today is that at the super-wealth creation level, the Chinese are now leading,” Hoogewerf said. “People will look at China the same way that people looked at Stanford or Silicon Valley in the 1990s.”

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About the Author

Brendan Byrne
While studying economics, Brendan found himself comfortably falling down the rabbit hole of restaurant work, ultimately opening a consulting business and working as a private wine buyer. On a whim, he moved to China, and in his first week following a triumphant pub quiz victory, he found himself bleeding on the floor based on his arrogance. The same man who put him there offered him a job lecturing for the University of Wales in various sister universities throughout the Middle Kingdom. While primarily lecturing in descriptive and comparative statistics, Brendan simultaneously earned an Msc in Banking and International Finance from the University of Wales-Bangor. He's presently doing something he hates, respecting French people. Well, two, his wife and her mother in the lovely town of Antigua, Guatemala. To contact Brendan or give him an exclusive, please contact him at [email protected]

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