South Korea ranked 14th as 36 Koreans made the list of the so-called “super-rich,” who have more than US$1 billion (1.12 trillion won) of assets.
China-based Hurun Institute released its annual ranking of the global rich for 2019 on March 3. It said the world had 2,470 billionaires as of Jan. 31 this year and South Korea had 36, an increase of three from last year.
By number of billionaires, South Korea placed 14th in the world, up a notch from the 15th a year earlier.
Among the 36 Korean billionaires, Samsung Electronics chairman Lee Kun-hee took the top spot with US$16 billion (17.98 trillion won) of assets. He came in 66th in the world. Samsung Electronics vice chairman Lee Jae-yong ranked 184th with US$8.60 billion (9.67 trillion won) of assets, while Celltrion chairman Seo Jung-jin ranked 189th with US$8.50 billion (9.55 trillion won).
In particular, six out of the 36 billionaires were newly listed on the annual ranking of the global rich this year, while three, who made the list last year, were dropped this year.
The number of global billionaires stood at 2,470 this year, down by 224 from a year ago. By country, China, which includes Hong Kong and Taiwan, had the most number of billionaires and showed the biggest drop by 161. Hurun Report chairman and publisher Rupert Hoogewerf said, "A fall in the Chinese stock markets coupled with a drop in the Chinese yuan were the main causes of the drop-offs in China."
The United States ranked second in the world as it added 13 more billionaires to the list to 584 this year. Japan came in 13th this year, down two slots from the 11th last year.
Out of 201 who newly listed on the global rich ranking this year, 52 were Chinese, accounting for the most newcomers on the list. The United States added 39 new billionaires, while India had 23 more.
China beat out the United States in terms of the total number of global rich and took the top spot in the world but none of them could make the top 10 list.
The top of the Hurun list is still dominated by Americans, with Amazon founder and CEO Jeffrey P. Bezos topping the list with assets worth of US$147 billion (165.15 trillion won). China's richest man, Jack Ma, founder of e-commerce giant Alibaba, ranked 22nd on the global list.
The combined assets of the global rich on the Hurun list decreased by US$950 billion (1,000.30 trillion won) this year compared to a year earlier.