Asia's Wealthiest Suffer Most in 2008

The year 2008 was rife with financial losses worldwide, but the groups that suffered most were the wealthy in Asia.

Compared to a 24 percent decrease in net worth for elites in general, the richest people in Asia saw the values of their holdings drop by greater than a third, at 35 percent.

Due in part to the Hang Seng’s 48 percent decline last year the Hong Kong rich were the hardest hit. Relatively-speaking, Japan faired best in Asia, with a somewhat less painful 17 percent decline in the holdings of its wealthy. 

The study, conducted by Merrill Lynch Global Wealth Management and consulting firm Capgemini, includes more specifics that are available in The Wall Street Journal article on the rich getting poorer.