Rich Koreans Still Favor Real Estate Investment

  • By Kim Ji-seop

    April 18, 2023 08:28

    The average assets of rich Koreans plummeted last year when real estate prices plummeted due to steep interest rate hikes (US$1=W1,311). But real estate continues to be the favored investment of the wealthy.
    The figures come from an annual wealth report by the Hana Institute of Finance.
    It shows that wealthy Koreans had an average of W7.2 billion in total assets last year, down from W7.8 billion the previous year. Their financial assets remained unchanged at W3.1 billion, but the value of their real estate holdings declined from W4.5 billion to W3.9 billion.
    Eight out of 10 have a gloomy economic outlook. 
    But although they lost money on their property holdings, real estate remained their top investment choice, accounting for 32 percent of their intended portfolios, followed by bank deposits (22 percent), stocks (14 percent) and bonds (10 percent).
    In fact the preference for real estate increased from 26 percent in 2021 as many intended to go bargain-hunting, while that for stocks dropped from 25 percent as stock markets tanked.
    Many rich Koreans do not expect the real estate market to rebound until 2025.
    The institute classifies as wealthy people who have more than W1 billion in financial assets, and as super-rich people with over W10 billion in financial assets and total assets of over W30 billion.
    The 41 super-rich people surveyed had average assets of W32.3 billion and annual earnings of W1.23 billion. Most were business executives, doctors and lawyers. 
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