National wealth

National wealth

National (net) wealth also net wealth (in Singapore), national net worth, gross national wealth (GNW), and total national wealth is the total sum value of monetary assets minus liabilities of a given nation, also National wealth” refers to the total value of wealth possessed by the citizens of a nation at a set point in time.[1] This figure is an important indicator of a nation's ability to take on debt and sustain spending, and is influenced by not only real estate prices, but also by the stock market, human resources, technological advancements which may create new assets or render others worthless, national infrastructure and exchange rates. The most significant component by far among most developed nations is commonly reported as household net wealth or worth and reflects infrastructure investment. National wealth can rise and decline, as evidenced in the US data following the 2008 financial crisis.


Differences by country

  • In Taiwan, Gross national wealth and net national wealth are two different measures.
  • In the USA, the figure regularly reported by the Federal Reserve of the US is household net worth, and includes corporations as they are essentially owned by American households. The United States Federal Reserve previously published the figure total national wealth in the past.[2] However, this figure ignores the current balance of accumulated borrowing and assets of the federal and state governments.
  • Japan publishes two figures, gross national assets and net national assets. By gross national assets, Japan reports a figure of 7954 trillion yen ($103 trillion), but claims liabilities of 5242 trillion ($68 trillion) for a net 2712 trillion in 2009.[3] However, these numbers are suspiciously large compared with GDP, only liabilities that could be worth that amount given Japan's ultra low reliance on foreign debt (in government and private sectors) is future promises of healthcare and pension for its aging citizens. Therefore Japan complies extra figures (which other nations do not compile) and makes their figures less meaningful to compare with other nations.


The following nations have reported national wealth statistics. Making meaningful comparisons is far from straightforward as the methodology in compiling them varies. (Russia and Switzerland figures are not issued by the nations themselves, and may be contested by their respective nations. They were compiled by the World Bank).

Country National wealth (USD, trillion) National wealth (local currency, trillion) Population(million) Current exchange rate (per USD) per capita wealth(USD) Year
United States (households only) 58.5 58.5[4] 312 - $187,500 2011-Q2
Japan 35.22 2,712[5] 127.9 77 $275,377 2009
United Kingdom 10.27 6.669[6] 62 1.54 $165,645 2009
Australia 7.60 7.683[7] 22 1.01 $345,455 2010
South Korea 6.185 7,385[8] 48.6 1194 $127,263 2009
Canada 6.0 6.4[9] 34.5 1.06 $173,913 2011-Q2
Russia 5.61 179.6 (calculated) 145 32 $38,709[10] 2005
Taiwan 4.23 130.2[11] 23 30.8 $183,794 2009
Switzerland 4.2 4.59 (calculated) 6.5 1.09 $648,200[10] 2005
Singapore (household only) 0.886 1.16 [12] 5.0 1.31 $177,200 2010

See also

External Sites


  1. ^
  2. ^
  3. ^
  4. ^ "Americans' net worth falls after 3 quarters of gains". Oregon Business News. 2011-09-16. Retrieved 2011-10-04. 
  5. ^ ""Japan's National wealth falls"". Livedoor. 2011-09-17. Retrieved 2011-09-17. 
  6. ^ "UK worth £6.7 trillion". Office for National Statistics. 2010-08-02. Retrieved 2010-08-11. 
  7. ^ "Australian System of National Accounts, 2009-10". Australian Bureau of Statistics. 2010-10-29. Retrieved 2011-01-21. 
  8. ^ "National Wealth Estimates at the End of 2009 (at current prices)". Statistics Korea. 2011-09-11. Retrieved 2010-10-04. 
  9. ^ "Canada's national net worth up, household worth drops". Money. 2011-09-14. Retrieved 2011-09-14. 
  10. ^ a b "Russia's national wealth structure differs from the one in the rest of the world". Pravda. 2005-09-20. Retrieved 2011-10-04. 
  11. ^ "National Wealth Statistics > Statistical Tables". National Statistics Republic of China. 2010-03-11. Retrieved 2010-08-11. 
  12. ^ "Singapore's household net wealth hits all-time high of US$886 bil.". 2010-11-11. Retrieved 2010-11-11. 

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