China Economy

New study lifts veil on China's most affluent

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 16 January, 2013, 10:18am
UPDATED : Monday, 30 May, 2016, 5:01pm

What does China’s typical “one per cent” look like? According to a recent university study, they live in an eastern Chinese city, have a college degree, run their own business, and make around HK$2 million a year or more.

The top one per cent of Chinese families in terms of wealth make an average 1.51 million yuan (HK$1.88m, US$243,000) per household a year, according to a new study on the country’s wealthy families.

More than 3.7 million families in China have total assets worth more than 10 million yuan (HK$12.5 million, US$1.6 million), according to the study, which was conducted by the Chengdu-based Southwestern University of Finance by polling 8,400 households nationwide. Almost 20 million families in China have total assets worth more than 3.05 million yuan (HK$3.8m, US$490,000).

Of the families in the top five per cent, with an average annual income of half a million yuan, almost nine out of ten live in urban areas. An overwhelming 94 per cent of these families live in eastern parts of the country.

The study also shows a close relationship between wealth and education in today’s China. Of the top five per cent of families, 63.8 per cent of family members have an associate degree or above, the study found.