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Sun 10 Oct 2010 10:10 AM

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UAE personal debt quadruples in 10 years

Credit Suisse wealth survey shows effects of consumerism and easy access to credit cards

UAE personal debt quadruples in 10 years
UAE residents’ debt levels have risen from $7,110 to $28,483, the investment bank said

The wealth of the average adult in the UAE has tripled over the course of the last decade, rising from $56,777 in 2000 to $150,121 this year, according to the latest data from Swiss bank Credit Suisse.

However, indebtedness has also grown at an even faster level, quadrupling over the last 10-year period.

UAE residents’ debt levels have risen from $7,110 to $28,483, the investment bank said. The rise is due to increased consumerism and the access to easy credit in the period leading up to the global recession.

Furthermore, the UAE’s percentage of world wealth has more than doubled from 0.11 percent in 2000 to 0.28 percent this year.

The Credit Suisse research showed that global wealth had rise by 72 percent since 2010, despite housing bubbles and near-zero real returns on equities.

The UAE was described as earning significant ‘frontier wealth’, putting it in a category alongside Columbia, Indonesia and Kuwait.

Countries that performed particularly well in the overall wealth category were generally smaller nations with open economies, such as Singapore, Switzerland and Norway. Among the worst performers were Argentina, Japan and Iceland.

Wealth per adult has doubled in India, and tripled in China over the course of the past decade.

GDP per capita is estimated at $49,995 in the UAE, $16,778 in Saudi Arabia, $21,097 in Bahrain, $37,451 in Kuwait and $20,332 in Oman. Qatar has the highest GDP per capita in the GCC, standing at a hefty $81,963. Only Luxembourg and Norway have a higher figure.

The report also revealed that 52.8 percent of UAE adults fell within the $10,000-$100,000 wealth range, with 37.3 percent falling in the over $100,000 range. Just under 10 percent came in the $1,000 to $10,000 range, with only 0.1 percent of the country’s adult population falling in the $1,000 or under range.

However, Credit Suisse admitted that the study of global household wealth was at “an embryonic stage” with data on many countries remaining scarce.

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Dan 9 years ago

"The Credit Suisse research showed that global wealth had rise by 72 percent since 2010" - there must be a mistake with this statement Arabianbusiness!