Why are China’s Ultra-High-Net-Worth Dying so Early?

Jonah M. Kessel

In China, there are currently 63,500 ultra-high-net-worth (UHNW) individuals who have assets worth $15.8 million or more, according to Business Insider. The average age of these people is 41 and 80% are male. Most of their wealth is derived from the ownership or sale of their companies. They invest their money primarily in real estate and stocks, and they own an average of three cars and like to golf and swim.

Here’s the catch though: A millionaire mortality study in China claims that the UHNW male only lives until the average age of 48. That’s it, and that’s very young. Men in the U.S., for comparison’s sake, have an average life expectancy of 76.4.

Earlier this month, China executed millionaire Liu Han, the president of a mining company who was involved in weapons smuggling, government corruption and even murder.  According to Forbes Magazine, he was the 148th wealthiest man in China. It was his death that prompted the millionaire mortality study. Coincidentally, Liu Han was 48 years old when he died.

Eerie? You bet. During the period between 2003 and 2011, 72 Chinese UHNW men perished around the age of 48. They died because 14 were executed, 17 succumbed to suicide, 15 were murdered and 19 fell sick.

So why is China’s population of UHNW men dying so early? RocketNews24 theorizes that because Chinese UHNW men are relatively new to China, they just haven’t grown old yet. That means that given more time, the average age of death will rise as they naturally pass away from old age.

Feature Image via JonahKessel


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