Australians seem to have lost their mojo! For much of the last few years we were an unhappy lot, then just when confidence seemed to be returning earlier this year, it took a slump again.
So what does it take to make us happy?
Obviously, it’s more than money because we’re already the world’s richest people.
Now, before you shoot me down, let me explain that I certainly realise that to be truly wealthy you need more than just money. Of course I realise that money is important in those aspects of your life where it is important (like paying the bills and the school fees) and money is not important in those areas of our lives where it is not important.
But many of us are still worrying about getting more money so we don’t have to worry about money anymore.
Back to the point I was starting to make – we’re already wealthy
Yes, we’re already wealthy. This was confirmed in the Credit Suisse 2012 Global Wealth Report, which showed that Australians are now comfortably the richest population in the world with a median wealth per adult of $US194,000.
This is more than double that of second-placed Switzerland with $US87,000.
Interestingly, the report states that Australians comprised some 1,571,000 people in the top 1% of the planet’s wealthiest people.
By the way, in order to be in the world’s top 1% you need a net wealth of $US710,000 and if you have net assets of over $US71,000 you are in the richest 10% of global wealth holders.
The fact that the proportion of Australians with wealth above $US100,000 is the highest of any country, and eight times the world average, is mainly thanks to Australia being sparsely populated, our high levels of natural resources and our high real estate prices.
How many millionaires?
America still has the largest number of millionaires – more than 11million – three times higher than its nearest rival Japan and Australia boasts more than 905,000 millionaires.
Better yet, the report forecasts that the number of millionaires in Australia will jump to 1.6 million over the next five years.
That’s a staggering 82% increase!
The report suggests that total world household wealth is expected to increase by almost 50% in the next five years, with the United States retaining the top spot with wealth of US$89 trillion.
China is expected to add US$18 trillion to global wealth and overtake Japan as the second-wealthiest country in the world.
This bodes well for Australia – we just happen to be in the right spot at the right time.
As China transforms from an industrial economy into a consumer-driven society, this will offer abundant opportunities for Australia.
Not only will China and other developing Asian countries require our resources, but we can supply them with health services, education, food and technology. If we play our cards right, we can be the tourism playground for a new generation of middle-class Chinese, just like we were for the Japanese in the 1980s.
Yes, there’s some good reasons for our mojo to return!