Rich get richer and more common

More than 100,000 Australians will join the ranks of high-net-worth individuals over the next four years, increasing their wealth by $157 billion, according to Datamonitor. HNWIs will increase from more than 200,000 to over 300,000 at a growth rate of 54 per cent. The total wealth of HNWIs over this period will rise to $388 billion.

The Australian rate of growth in HNWI numbers is already one of the highest in the world, increasing by 47 per cent over the past five years. In this time HNWIs have increased their collective wealth by $74 billion to $231 billion.

Datamonitor defines a HNWI as someone with liquid assets of over $410,000. The fastest growth rate is amongst HNWIs with liquid assets of more than $3 million. By 2008, the average amount of such assets owned by high-net-worth individuals is tipped to rise from $1.15 million to $1.26 million.