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Wealthy Koreans invest less in financial products, more in real estate

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The logo of KB Financial Group is seen on a window inside its headquarters in Yeouido, Seoul in this file photo. Korea Times file
The logo of KB Financial Group is seen on a window inside its headquarters in Yeouido, Seoul in this file photo. Korea Times file

By Yi Whan-woo

Wealthy Korean nationals are investing less in financial investment products and more in real estate, according to data released Sunday.

In a survey of 400 people who have 1 billion won ($768,000) or more in their financial assets, KB Financial Group found that stocks, bonds, derivatives and other financial investment products accounted for 36.6 percent of their total wealth in 2021. The rate was down from 41.2 percent in 2019 and 39.9 percent in 2021.

The percentage of real estate investments out of the total wealth has increased over the cited period: 54.3 percent in 2019, 56 percent in 2020 and 59 percent in 2021.

Asked how they make investment profits, 17 percent of the 400 said they did so through financial investments in 2021, as compared to 42 percent in 2020 and 19.3 percent in 2019.

Some 42.5 percent of the 400 said they reaped profits by buying property for residential purposes, as compared to 41.3 percent in 2020 and 31.3 percent in 2019.

The financial group said the number of people whose financial assets are worth 1 billion won or more reached 424,000 in 2021, an increase from 393,000 in 2020 and 354,000 in 2019.

Their total wealth has increased over time, from 2,154 trillion won in 2019, to 2,618 trillion won in 2020 and 2,833 trillion won in 2021.

By region, 70.3 percent of wealthy Korean nationals lived in Seoul, Incheon and Gyeonggi Province last year.

Some 45.3 percent of wealthy Koreans living in Seoul had homes in the city's three most affluent districts: Gangnam, Seocho and Songpa.


Yi Whan-woo yistory@koreatimes.co.kr


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