The value of wealth held by all private individuals around the world has declined due to stock market and currency fluctuations. Image Credit: File photo

Dubai: India, China and Japan are still among the richest countries in the world, according to a new report, despite a decline in private wealth last year due to stock market and currency fluctuations.

The New World Wealth’s latest study ranked India as the sixth richest state in terms of private wealth in 2018, with $8,148 billion held by all people living in the Asian country.

The total amount of wealth held by Indians last year was one per cent less than in 2017, when combined fortunes of private individuals reached $8,230 billion. Wealth refers to the net assets of a person and it includes all their properties, cash, equities and business interests.

The United States (US) has retained its crown as the most affluent country in the world, with total wealth held privately amounting to $60,707 billion in 2018, down by 3 per cent from the previous year.

The combined fortunes of Chinese individuals also dropped by five per cent to $23,563 billion, but China has held its spot as the second-wealthiest state globally, followed by Japan (with $19,131 billion), United Kingdom ($9,125 billion) and Germany ($8,790 billion).

Overall, people around the world saw their fortunes drop by five per cent last year, from $215 trillion at the end of 2017 to $204 trillion at the end of 2018, as global stock markets and global property markets dipped across the board.

All major global stock market indices, for example, were down during the year. The Dow Jones Industrial Average and S&P 500 index posted a six per cent decline, while the MSCI world index and MSCI emerging market index fell 11 per cent and 18 per cent, respectively.

“More importantly, all major currencies depreciated against the US dollar during the year, with the exception of the Japanese and Thai currencies, which appreciated only slightly,” said the New World Wealth report. “This had a major impact as all our wealth figures are in $ terms.”

World’s 10 richest countries (Value of wealth in $ billion) 2018

1. United States: 60,707

2. China: 23,563

3. Japan: 19,131

4. United Kingdom: 9,125

5. Germany: 8,790

6. India: 8,148

7. Australia: 6,020

8. Canada: 6,009

9. France: 5,851

10. Italy: 3,849