Australians' wealth driven by property

Australians have the highest median wealth in the world, largely due to real estate holdings, according to a new report by Credit Suisse.

The 2013 Global Wealth Report showed the median wealth of Australian adults is US$219,505.

On average, 59 per cent of Australians’ wealth is held in real estate assets. This rate is the second highest in the world, after Norway.

Australia’s high real estate prices may be behind this trend.

“In part, it reflects a sparsely populated country with a large endowment of land and natural resources, but it is also a manifestation of high urban real estate prices,” the report stated.

Low credit card and student loan debt is also a factor, according to the report.

The data also shows Australia has the largest proportion of people with a net worth above US$100,000.

Measured by average wealth, Australians drop back to second place behind the Swiss, with Australians holding on average US$402,578.

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