The global good life

What’s the secret to being a millionaire? Well, interestingly, it is having a global almost nomadic way to life, both personally and professionally, that has led to many people making a significant success of their lives.
This was one of the major findings of a report released by RBC Wealth Management and The Economist Intelligence Unit, which also noted that living life as a mobile expat is motivated by a desire to live a better quality of life and ensure that one’s family is well-catered for.
The study, which is entitled Wealth Through the Prism of Culture and Modernity, refers to this demographic as Internationally Mobile Wealthy Individuals (IMWI). They are classed as professionals who have investable assets of at least $1 million (approximately £619,865) who tend to live and work out of their country of birth for more than half of the year.
Furthermore, this group is more likely to be self-made millionaires, the bulk of them being entrepreneurs. Other prominent positions included being an executive of a public organisation. Intriguingly, less than a third of successful, global millionaires came from a background of wealth.
“As globalised economies converge, high net worth individuals have increasingly international footprints, with personal and professional interests in multiple geographies,” commented George Lewis, group head at RBC Wealth Management & Insurance.
“Our experience working with high net worth clients around the world shows that their success is often strongly influenced by a global perspective about building, protecting and ultimately transferring wealth to future generations.”
The study showed that 60 per cent of IMWIs will generate the bulk of their income in the country they are currently based in, with half of respondents (48 per cent) reinvesting it back into this country. A third meanwhile will pump the money back into their country of origin.
Real estate was found to be the preferred investment choice for mobile millionaires, with those currently located in the Asia-Pacific region the biggest investors in property. This suggests that there are plenty of opportunities to make serious money in this market.
“While birth country influences charitable giving as part of an estate plan, country of residence affects current levels of donations among mobile millionaires, likely due to levels of government social spending and charitable tax benefits,” the authors of the report stated.
Three quarters of IMWIs in North America will give to local charities, while 48 per cent of expats residing in the Asia-Pacific region will give to causes back in their country of birth.