This report draws upon the latest research to examine giving trends by affluent individuals in Australia and how these compare with overseas counterparts. It is driven by several factors. Giving by individuals matters enormously to the nonprofit sector, far exceeding business donations. Whether the richest of the population gives commensurate with their wealth is a question worth asking. The assets held by the wealthier end of Australia’s population have burgeoned in recent decades as have the number considered affluent.
In 2006, Merrill Lynch/Capgemini drew attention to Australia’s trend to affluence, describing its high net worth segment as one of the fastest growing in the world and dismissing suggestions that average wealth held by affluent individuals was well below overseas counterparts. The next four decades are also expected to pour continued wealth into this segment as the oldest generation passes and accumulated assets shift to grown children. This intergenerational transfer of wealth is widely projected to surpass that of any previous era.