Money makes the world go round but who in the world has the most of it?
Back in 2021, there was a change at the top: The US was stripped of its title as the richest country in the world (by net worth), and China became the world’s wealthiest nation. The switch-up in the global wealth leaderboard was announced in a report from McKinsey & Co., said Bloomberg who first broke the story, which revealed that China’s value had skyrocketed from $7 trillion in 2000 to $120 trillion in 2020.
In that same time, the value of the United States climbed to almost $90 trillion, falling short of the number one spot.
China’s race to the top of the leaderboard contributed to almost a third of the total increase in global wealth which went from $156 trillion to $514 trillion in the same time frame.
It’s thought that China’s economic rise accelerated after it became a member of the World Trade Organisation (WTO), an intergovernmental organization that regulates trade between nations. Countries can benefit from such membership as the WTO aids nations in establishing the rules of international trade and enforcing them in developing markets.
Despite China's huge overall wealth, it’s not shared by the whole country as it’s estimated that more than two-thirds of the wealth is contained to just 10 percent of the wealthiest households. The same ratio is seen in the US.
But, two years later, is this still the case? Is China still the world's richest country?
According to Global Citizen Solutions, it is not. It seems the US has clawed back its lead and was the world's wealthiest nation by net worth last year, with a colossal $145.8 trillion net wealth.
It's a different story, however, if judged by Gross Domestic Product (GDP) per capita: Luxembourg is the winner here, with a sum of $127,673, followed by Ireland, Norway, and Switzerland.