But billionaires bloom and smell
The Swiss bank Credit Suisse has published an annual report, from which it follows: the number of dollar millionaires in Russia for the coronavirus 2020 decreased by 44 thousand people, and their general condition also decreased. On the other hand, judging by other studies published earlier, the number of Russian billionaires over the same period increased by several people, as did their total wealth. “Media” tried to find out what explains these contradictory tendencies.
The study of the Swiss bank, in particular, says that the general global trends of the past year are as follows: in the developed world, in the USA, Canada, and European countries, for example, the number of millionaires and the average state of citizens, in general, has grown, and in the developing countries of Latin America (Brazil, Mexico, Chile), Asia (Thailand, India and Hong Kong) and Russia – decreased. Dollar millionaires, of whom the same bank in 2019 numbered 313 thousand in our country, in 2020 only 260 thousand were found. The experts of the bank explain this not as large-scale as in other more developed countries, with the help of the state to business and citizens in general, and the devaluation of the ruble, which partially devalued the money of millionaires (as well as all Russians, by the way).
But why, after all, everything was not very good for Russian millionaires, while for billionaires it was good? Media asked this question to experts in economics.
Nikita MASLENNIKOV, Advisor, Institute of Contemporary Development:
“There are many factors that influenced the reduction in the number of Russian millionaires. One of them, of course, is the volume of our state support: they were not comparable to either American, European, or even Chinese. According to the most conservative estimates of rating agencies, the total growth of assets of the population in the world as a whole is 5 trillion dollars, of which about half of this amount is in cash. We remember about the “helicopter” money that was handed out in the United States without any conditions … This was not the case in Russia, the authorities tried to take targeted and targeted measures, and perhaps not quite, everything worked out. And who is our dollar millionaires? These are companies, sometimes high-tech, on the borderline between small and medium-sized businesses, and medium-sized businesses. It was they who turned out to be the most affected by the quarantine measures: there is no production, no profit – the personal personal income of the owners is falling … As for the billionaires, these are the owners of systemic large enterprises, basic strategic companies that stayed afloat even during the lockdown, there was a special program for their support, and quite tangible. And how can the revenues of the management of oil and gas companies go down, for example, when prices for these types of raw materials went up in the second half of the year? …
As for the depreciation of the national currency, this, again, is not an unambiguous thing. The ruble is getting cheaper – the premium is received by export-oriented companies: oil workers, gas workers, metallurgists, a chemical complex, even agrarians … And those who worked on imported raw materials, on the contrary, have sharply lost their income … ”
Igor NIKOLAEV, Director of the Institute for Strategic Analysis of the company “Financial and Accounting Consultants”:
“As for fortunes in general, I would rather agree that their size has probably decreased, because fortune is usually measured by the value of assets, and these are, first of all, shares. The shares of Russian companies, as always during crises, fell on our stock exchange, last year – by 10%. The depreciation of the ruble is also important, and it fell quite strongly, by 18-19% last year against the dollar, against the euro – by 31% in general. So the shares were falling, and if you also count the assets in dollar terms, that’s the reduction in the number of dollar millionaires …
The real disposable income of the entire population of Russia in 2020 decreased by 3%. By the way, it is interesting: the real disposable income of the population in the OECD countries (Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, unites 38 developed countries of the world – “Media”.), Grew by 2.7% over the same year. There is harmony: both per capita incomes as a whole have grown, and millionaires have become even richer, too. And we have harmony: both the population is in the red, and there are fewer millionaires. Let us console ourselves with the fact that one can be calm for the Russian billionaires …