An article on the authoritative financial site Bloomberg ( https://www.bloomberg.com/opinion/articles/2024-01-15/why-germany-is-rich-but-germans-are-poor-and-angry ) by columnist Chris Bryant confirms that, on average, Maltese and Gozitan households are the second richest in Europe. This is the case when one takes into account the proportion of homeowners and how much their residential property costs, together with the average financial assets at their disposal. This amount of assets is reduced by the sum of debts and other financial obligations that households have.
The source of this information are the Distributional Wealth Accounts of the European Central Bank. These are based on a survey of household finances held across the euro area by the European Central Bank in collaboration with central banks of the various countries. The information of this survey is updated by means of information from Eurostat.
Maltese and Gozitan families are likelier than those in many other countries to be property owners. Furthermore, the value of their property is higher while the majority of homeowners do not have substantial loans on their property. In addition, households in Malta have an average amount of deposits that is well above the European average.
The Bloomberg article reveals that, while the German economy is among the most developed in the world, German families are not very rich in terms of assets. This is mainly because very few own their homes. There is also great asset inequality, with those on high incomes tending to own the majority of assets in the country. In fact, the 10% wealthiest German families have average net assets of €725,000, while the 40% least well-off have assets that average 16 times less than that. According to the Bloomberg columnist, this is leading to anger and social division. This is because an average German family has just as much assets as an average Greek family, even though Germany is far more economically advanced.
European Central Bank statistics indicate that households in Malta have net assets that are twice that of the average German household. Families in Luxembourg have the largest amount of assets, while those with the least amount are households in Latvia. The latter have assets ten times lower than the average Maltese and Gozitan family.
These statistics from the European Central Bank are yet another confirmation of how many families in our country have benefited from our country’s thriving economy in recent years.
Photo: Andrea Piacquadio