Much of the world's wealth is in the hands of a relatively small number of super wealthy individuals. Many of them are now elderly and making plans about what will happen to their wealth, after they pass away.
Over the past few years, you may have heard reports about income and wealth inequality in the U.S. Economic data shows that the country's wealth is rapidly being concentrated into fewer and fewer hands, at the top of the socioeconomic scale.
As a result, many politicians like to talk about the top 1%. However, the data shows that wealth is even far more concentrated than that. Actually, it is in the top 0.1%.
This same phenomenon is not just occurring in the U.S. It is happening all over the world.
This was the subject of a recent Private Wealth article "The World's Aging Rich Are Plotting What's Next."
The article provides many examples of what various wealthy people are planning. They naturally wish to keep their wealth away from waiting governments and do not want their families to fight over it.
This has led to various legal methods to avoid estate taxation and other problems.
Some are choosing to transfer the bulk of their assets to family members now. Others are planning to give a large portion of their wealth away to charities, so their families have nothing to fight over.
Since much of the world's wealth is in complicated trusts and other entities, it will be interesting to see how it all gets sorted out when the current holders continue to age and do pass away.
Reference: Private Wealth (March 3, 2017) "The World's Aging Rich Are Plotting What's Next."