Just before the economic crisis hit the global economy the American economy was booming and the number of rich in America had hit an all time high with almost 9.2 million households with assets worth $1 million or more. The economic downturn wiped away a lot of wealth and the number of millionaire households came down sharply. The situation is only marginally better today as people are still losing jobs and homes. However a new study conducted by Chicago based Spectrem Group reveals that the number of millionaires in America grew by 200,000 in 2011.
The number in itself looks rather large but in the context of the large base of rich households in America it represents a growth rate of only 2%. The growth is much slower than what was recorded in 2009 and 2010. Spectrem in its study has calculated the net worth of households excluding the principal residence. According to their study there are now 8.6 million households in the U.S. with a total net worth of $1 million or more. The number of households worth $5 million or more and $25 million or more has grown at less than 2%. There are now 1,078,000 households worth $5 million or more and about 107,000 people worth $25 million or more.
George Walper, president of Spectrem Group has analyzed the study and arrived at the conclusion that weak financial markets and the slow recovery in real-estate have been the primary reasons for the slow growth. He felt that the millionaires were still worried but more optimistic than earlier.
The largest component of the rich household was made up of retired Managers who constitute 17% of the group. The uncertainty in the economy makes it very difficult to predict if the number of millionaire households will grow at a faster rate or not.