In 2014 the global billionaires club (up an extra 155 members over the year) contained 2,325 people with combined assets of $7.29 trillion (£4.46 trillion), according to the findings of a Billionaire Census report from Singaporean research firm Wealth-X and Swiss bank UBS.
Their net worth is almost a 10th of global GDP and higher than the combined market capitalisation of all the companies in the Dow Jones Industrial Average. The value of their assets grew by 12 per cent over the preceding year.
There were 571 billionaires in the US, 190 in China and 130 in Britain. Europe remains the region with the highest concentration of billionaires at 775.