Assets of worldÆs richest up 9.4% to $40.7 trillion

Merrill Lynch expects the combined assets of the worldÆs high-net-worth individuals to reach $59.1 trillion by 2012, led by those in the Middle East, Latin America, and Africa.

The combined wealth of the worldÆs high-net-worth individuals HNWIs grew 9.4% to $40.7 trillion in 2007, according to the 12th annual World Wealth Report released by Merrill Lynch and consulting firm Capgemini.

Given that 2007 was a volatile year for financial markets worldwide, Victor Tan, Hong Kong market director at Merrill Lynch Global Wealth Management, considers the growth impressive. ThatÆs still lower than the 11.4% growth in HNWI assets to $37.2 trillion last year, however.

Last yearÆs increase in...

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