South Africa is currently navigating a turbulent course of political, economic, and financial uncertainties that are seriously undermining future prospects. Low economic growth, high inflation, currency devaluation, and the threat of a further downgrade of the country’s national credit rating to “junk” are hampering the South African wealth market. Political tensions are increasing investor nerves, making it a vital time for wealth managers to guide their clients through rough waters.
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Key Findings of Wealth in South Africa Market:
- Affluent individuals account for just 0.8% of the South African population but hold over 90% of liquid assets. This reflects the high levels of wealth inequality, with the country consistently ranked as the most unequal in the world.
- The macro environment will hamper growth in the savings and investments market, which is nevertheless still forecast to grow by 5.4% a year to 2020.
- In spite of high inflation and taxation reducing the appeal of deposits, this class will be the major driver of growth to 2020. This will be the result of gradually increasing savings levels and retail investors seeking safe havens in volatile times.
- South African HNW individuals hold 26.5% of their wealth outside of traditional liquid allocations, with a fairly even split between property and alternative investments (hedge funds in particular).
- Offshore investments account for 32.2% of HNW portfolios, significantly above the global average, which is primarily driven by the desire for geographic diversification.
- Offshore investments will remain a critical part of HNW portfolios given current political, investment grade, and currency concerns.
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Synopsis of Wealth in South Africa Market:
Verdict Financial’s “Wealth in South Africa: Sizing the Market Opportunity 2016” analyzes the South African wealth and retail savings and investments markets, with a focus on the HNW segment. The report is based on our proprietary datasets.
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Specifically, the report:
- Sizes the affluent market (both by number of individuals and the value of their liquid assets) using our proprietary datasets.
- Analyzes which asset classes are favored by South African investors and how their preferences impact the growth of the total savings and investments market.
- Examines HNW clients’ attitudes towards non-liquid investments such as property and commodities.
- Identifies key drivers and booking centers for offshore investments.
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