London Remains Top City in the Eyes of the World’s Richest: MBA News |

London Remains Top City in the Eyes of the World’s Richest: MBA News

By Tim Dhoul

Updated August 27, 2014 Updated August 27, 2014

The world’s richest residents still see London as the world’s most important city, according to the 2014 edition of Knight Frank’s Wealth Report. Although, there is little to choose between the UK’s capital and New York which holds second position in the Global Cities Survey.

Real estate consultancy firm, Knight Frank, has produced rankings aimed at assessing a city’s importance in the eyes of the world’s richest people for the past eight years. Those deemed the ‘world’s richest’ are termed ‘ultra-high-net-worth individuals’ or UHNWIs and include those with US$30 million or more in net assets, excluding their primary residence.

As well as looking at the number of UHNWIs residing in each city, the four key indicators used by Knight Frank to draw up the top ten are economic activity, quality of life, knowledge & influence and political power.

Knight Frank’s Wealth Report: top ten for 2014

  1. London
  2. New York
  3. Singapore
  4. Hong Kong
  5. Geneva
  6. Shanghai
  7. Miami
  8. Dubai
  9. Beijing
  10. Paris

Looking ahead, the Knight Frank Wealth Report expects New York to overtake London by 2024 as the number of its UHNWI residents, along with UHNWIs from China, Russia and Europe, rises. However, these two powerhouses are set to remain a safe distance from the changes expected below them over the next decade.

“It is further down our leader board that the real city wars are being waged. The main battleground is Asia, where a handful of locations are slugging it out in the hope of establishing a clear lead as the region’s alpha urban hub,” a Wealth Report article surmises.

Outside of the top ten, the report also outlines five fast-growing cities. These are Sao Paulo, Istanbul, Abu Dhabi, Mumbai and Sydney, with Mumbai predicted to enter the world’s top ten in 2024.

Attitudes of the world’s richest

In addition to the list of cities considered integral to the world’s richest individuals, Knight Frank’s Wealth Report also canvasses 600 private bankers and wealth advisors to gain an insight into the thinking behind the 23,000 clients worldwide that they represent.

In the Attitude Survey, roughly 20% of UHNWIs said they were considering buying another home in 2014. 15% indicated that they may change their country of residence, with the UK most often cited as a preference.

Property was also shown to be a firm favorite investment choice, with 40% of those polled saying that their portfolio had been added to in 2013. However, stock and shares proved even more popular, with two-thirds of respondents expecting clients to increase their stakes. Less popular were gold and commodities, with 26% saying that their clients would reduce their interests over the next year.

Increasing spending on luxury goods was also on the agenda for 36% of respondents replying on behalf of their clients. Art topped the list of items interesting clients, followed by wine, cars and watches.

This article was originally published in April 2014 . It was last updated in August 2014

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Tim is a writer with a background in consumer journalism and charity communications. He trained as a journalist in the UK and holds degrees in history (BA) and Latin American studies (MA).