Fine wine and billionaires

By March 11, 2010Fine Wine Market

Today, Forbes magazine released its latest rich list, which tracks the fortunes of the world's billionaires. According to the report, the number of "super-rich" has increased by 27% in the past year, reaching 1,011. 

We have previously demonstrated that fine wine prices rarely show a strong correlation with other asset classes. The number of billionaires, however, tracks prices remarkably closely. As you can see in the chart below – which plots the Forbes data alongside the Liv-ex 100 Fine Wine Index – the correlation is startling. 

Of course, the point here is not that these billionaires are purchasing enormous amounts of fine wine (although some may well be) but rather that this figure provides a good measure of global wealth creation, particularly among the richest in society (i.e those who are most likely to be fine wine collectors and investors). 

It is also interesting to note, as Jancis Robinson highlights, that two-thirds of new entrants to the list came from Asia. China now has the second largest number of billionaires, second only to the US.

Liv-ex.v.billionaires 2010