Bloomberg News

Cyprus Households Are Second Richest in Euro Area, ECB Data Show

April 09, 2013

Households in Cyprus, which secured a European Union-led bailout last month, are the second richest in the euro area, European Central Bank data show.

The median net wealth of Cypriot households was 266,900 euros ($348,598) in 2010, according to the Eurosystem Household Finance and Consumption Survey published today. Only Luxemburg’s households were more affluent, with median net wealth of 397,800 euros. Households in Germany, which is contributing the lion’s share to bailouts of distressed nations, had a median net wealth of 51,400 euros.

A fumbled first attempt to rescue Cyprus last month roiled financial markets and sparked concern that it might exit the 17- nation common currency. The island nation secured a 10 billion- euro bailout on March 25 after bowing to demands from creditors to shrink its banking system and tax depositors.

The ECB survey, published today for the first time, covers more than 62,000 households in all euro-area countries except Ireland and Estonia. Data from Cyprus should be interpreted with caution, the ECB said, adding that net wealth figures “appear less of an outlier.”

One element that might explain the difference in net wealth is household size. The average number of people per German household is 2.04, while in Cyprus it is 2.76, the most in the region after Malta and Slovakia, according to the ECB data.

To contact the reporter on this story: Jana Randow in Frankfurt at jrandow@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Craig Stirling at cstirling1@bloomberg.net


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