Global billionaire population tops 2,000
Being a billionaire isn't so special anymore.
A new study from Wealth-X and UBS finds that the global population of billionaires has surged past 2,000. Their combined wealth totals $6.5 trillion—more than the combined gross domestic product of France and Germany.
Previous estimates placed the world's billionaire population at between 1,200 and 1,600.
The World Ultra Wealth Report found that just under 200,000 people in the world are worth $30 million or more. The $30 million-plus group, labeled the "ultra-wealthy," grew by 6 percent in 2013 and have a combined fortune of $28 trillion.
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Surprisingly, most of the growth in the number of ultrawealthy was in the U.S. and Europe rather than in emerging markets. Luxury brands have been calling China, Brazil, Russia and other emerging countries the future of wealth. But economic slowdowns in China and Brazil led to a drop in their number of billionaires this year.
Wealth-X and UBS forecast that Asia will rebound, however.
"Asia will generate more ultra-high net worth individuals and wealth than the U.S. and Europe in the next five years," UBS said in the report.
—By CNBC's Robert Frank. Follow him on Twitter @robtfrank.