Asia Now Has More Millionaires Than North America

North America slipped to No. 2 this week on the list of “most millionaires” after Asia for the first time recorded more high dollar earners.

The report considered a millionaire to be anyone with $1 million to invest and did not include assets such as homes, cars and other belongings.

While Asia has managed to rack up more millionaires in recent years the number of people becoming millionaires has been slow to rise in large part because of the euro zone crisis which has made economic movements sluggish in many developing markets.

According to the report the number of millionaires worldwide grew by 0.8 percent to 11 million, however their collective wealth fell by 1.7 percent to $42 trillion. The only region to not witness a decline in overall wealth was the Middle East. The report states that this was the first drop in millionaire wealth since 2008 when their value tumbled by 20 percent.

The report also found that families with $30 million or more to invest watched as their combined wealth fell by 4.9 percent while the number of millionaires tumbled by 2.5 percent to approximately 100,000 people.

Some countries have recently been hit worse than others, India saw its millionaire ranks fall by 18 percent (27,500 people) to a 2011 yearly low of 125,500. Hong Kong also witnessed a 17.4 percent drop in the number of its millionaires.

China on the other hand say the number of millionaires among its ranks rise by $1 million to 562,400 while Japan witnessed a similar 4.8 percent increase.

Much of the lost and slowing wealth around the world has been blamed on recessions alongside other market conditions. For example the Tsunami in Japan slowed growth, as did a downgrade in U.S. sovereign debt and political unrest in the Middle East.