Say what? 1 in 25 New Yorkers are millionaires

Compiled by Michael De Groote, Deseret News National Edition

Published: Mon, Aug. 4, 2014, 4:45 a.m. MDT

 Walk down a street in New York and odds are, one in 25 of those people you see are a millionaire.

Walk down a street in New York and odds are, one in 25 of those people you see are a millionaire.

(Grant Wickes, grantwickes via flickr)

Walk down the streets of New York City and start counting people. When you get to 25, chances are you walked past a millionaire (or had one drive by in a limo).

A new analysis by Spear's magazine and a consulting firm called WealthInsight found that 4.63 percent of New Yorkers are millionaires — about one in every 25.

MSN/Money described the criteria for membership in this 1 in 25 club: "A millionaire is someone whose net worth, excluding their primary residence, is $1 million or more."

And it isn't just the percentage. It is the sheer amount of millionaires in the city. The Los Angeles Times put the numbers at 389,100 people.

"New York has long been the bastion of wealth not only in America, but the world," Oliver Williams, a WealthInsight analyst, told The Times. "It has the second-largest millionaire and largest billionaire population of any global city."

The Spear's survey found a few cities where the odds of bumping into a millionaire are even higher.

"The new study shows that in city-state Monaco you are only ever a stone's throw from a millionaire — with almost a third of the population (29.21 percent) classed in this financial bracket. Not far behind are Swiss banking centers Zurich (27.34 percent) and Geneva (17.92) in second and third place, with key financial centers New York (4.63 percent) and Frankfurt (3.88 percent) in fourth and fifth."

The Jewish Voice points out that "New York City was the only metropolis in America to place in the top 17 cities with the densest concentration of millionaires." This is because the next American city to be mentioned on the list, Houston (2.09 percent millionaires), was 18th on the list and San Francisco (2.07 percent) was 19th.

"We also always need to bear in mind that (a city) having millionaires isn't itself a good thing if it means inequality — which is damaging to everyone — goes up too," said Spear's editor Josh Spero.

Email: mdegroote@deseretnews.com

Twitter: @degroote

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1. Meadow
Alpharetta, GA,
Aug. 4, 2014

On in 25 in NYC seems pretty low, actually. Four percent of Americans nationwide have net assets of at least $1,000,000, acc. to a July 16, 2014 article on ABCnews.go.com. Acc. to the Wall Street Journal on the same day, the percentage of millionaires is highest in Maryland, at 7.7% In Utah, it's 4.95%, higher than in NYC.

2. Bob A. Bohey
Marlborough, MA,
Aug. 4, 2014

If one has been working for 25-30 yrs. and contributing the max into a 401k or other type of retirement account it's easy to imagine that there are that many millionaires in NY.

3. Brave Sir Robin
San Diego, CA,
Aug. 4, 2014

Next question that needs to be answered: How many of those NYC millionaires in debt? Remember, how much money you make matters little. It's how much you make vs. how much you spend. In Manhattan, chances are many of those millionaires are living paycheck to paycheck.

4. DN Subscriber
Cottonwood Heights, UT,
Aug. 4, 2014

If I had a million dollars, I darn sure would leave New York (City and state) in a hearbeat.

If they offered to pay me a million dollars, I would not move to New York.

And, since neither of the above has happened, I am much happier being here in Utah anyway!

5. JoeCapitalist2
Orem, UT,
Aug. 4, 2014

From the article: "A millionaire is someone whose net worth, excluding their primary residence, is $1 million or more."

So, if you can't count your equity in your home then you have to have quite a few other assets to qualify. It is not based on your income or stuff you buy on credit.

Personally, I think equity in a home is wealth and should be counted. That all said, with the cost of living these days, being a millionaire does not necessarily make one "rich" anymore.