Russia got richer even as the war in Ukraine raged on last year, while the West shed trillions of dollars of wealth

By George Glover – Business Insider

St. Basil's Cathedral in Moscow, Russia.

Russians got richer last year even as the war in Ukraine raged on, while the US and Europe lost trillions of dollars, UBS reported.

Russia added $600 billion of total wealth, the Swiss bank found in its annual Global Wealth Report, published Tuesday.

The number of Russian millionaires also rose by about 56,000 to 408,000 in 2022, while the number of ultra-high-net-worth individuals — people worth over $50 million — jumped by nearly 4,500.

But the US lost more wealth than any other country last year, shedding $5.9 trillion, while North America and Europe combined got $10.9 trillion poorer, UBS reported.

There were also 1 million fewer American millionaires by the end of 2022,  although the US still accounted for over 50% of the world’s ultra-high-net-worth individuals, the bank said.

Russia’s wealth gains came despite its invasion of Ukraine in February, which has led to the West imposing sanctions on the Kremlin that led to its economy shrinking and triggered a slump for Moscow-listed stocks.

UBS acknowledges that “wealth trends in Russia are difficult to determine at this time,” but did highlight it as one of a handful of countries that had gotten richer in 2022.

Rising oil prices could be one factor behind the wealth increase, with exports of the commodity a key economic engine for Russia. The cost of a barrel of benchmark Urals crude jumped by about $7 last year, data from Refinitiv indicated.

Mexico, India, and Brazil all also added significant amounts of wealth in 2022, UBS’s report suggested, while the US, Japan, China, Canada, and Australia lost the most.


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