Wealth in Denmark: Sizing the Market Opportunity

The outlook is highly positive for the Danish wealth market, with performance over the coming five years set to improve on the previous five. Denmark’s economic position is strong, with impressive private consumption driving economic growth and economic growth in turn driving household saving. The country also has a high current account surplus, which saw it introduce negative interest rates in 2012. While household savings were protected, returns on deposits are minimal. Even so, both deposits and mutual funds continue to attract steady inflows. On the other hand, bond investments are diminishing, and it is a shrinking market for retail investors. The retail non-resident market is small, but does attract participation in Denmark’s equity and bond markets.

This report analyzes Denmark’s wealth and retail savings and investments markets, with a focus on the HNW segment. The report is based on our proprietary datasets.

Specifically the report –

– Sizes the affluent market (both by number of individuals and the value of their assets) using GlobalData’s proprietary datasets.

– Examines HNW clients’ attitudes towards non-liquid asset classes such as property, commodities, and offshore investments.

– Analyzes which asset classes are favored by Danish investors and how their preferences impact the growth of the total savings and investments market.

– Evaluates the size of the retail non-resident (offshore) market in Denmark and foreign investors’ preferences.


The affluent population is rebounding. A compound annual growth rate of 4.5% is forecast between 2018 and 2022, bringing the number of affluent individuals to 1.2 million.

The retail savings and investments market is well developed, with mutual funds and equities accounting for 46.6% of the market in 2017. Notably, historic growth in mutual funds has been driven by inflows, while for equity growth has been performance-driven.

Denmark has the largest covered bond market in the world, which is a particular draw to foreign investors. Non-resident investors accounted for 50.8% of retail bond balances at the end of 2017.

Reasons to buy

Benchmark your share of the Danish wealth market against the current market size.

Forecast your future growth prospects using our projections for the market to 2022.

Identify your most promising client segment by analyzing penetration of affluent individuals in Denmark.

Evaluate your HNW proposition by understanding how the ever-changing tax system affects your HNW clients.

Review your offshore strategy and offering for non-resident investors by learning the dynamics in these markets.

Companies mentioned



Table of Contents

Table of Contents


1.1. Market summary 2

1.2. Key findings 2

1.3. Critical success factors 2


2.1. Introduction 8

2.2. An enviable economic position will lead to strong growth for the wealth market 8

2.2.1. The Danish economy is a strong position, with few headwinds on the horizon 8

2.2.2. Danes have high levels of personal debt, but higher levels of personal assets 9

2.2.3. The rebounding affluent population is set to record a CAGR of

4.5% to 2022 9

2.2.4. The Danish market has a notable emerging affluent segment 9

2.2.5. Growth in liquid assets will be stronger over the next five years than the previous five 10

2.2.6. HNW individuals also hold notable assets in less liquid assets, particularly property 11

2.3. Offshore investments account for just over 12% of total HNW assets 12

2.3.1. Equities, alternatives, and property account for the majority of offshore wealth 12

2.3.2. Tax efficiency is a key driver for offshore investment, but Danish authorities are tightening the net on evasion 13

2.3.3. Denmark also plays an active role in global tax transparency efforts, having signed TIEAs and double taxation conventions with many offshore centers globally 13


3.1. Introduction 15

3.2. Total retail savings and investments are set to grow by

5.0% to 2022 15

3.2.1. The strong investment component of the market aids growth 15

3.2.2. Mutual funds and equities are set to experience the strongest future growth 16

3.3. Retail deposit growth has largely been driven by inflows 17

3.3.1. Deposits continue to attract inflows, despite negative interest rates 17

3.4. Mutual funds will continue to go from strength to strength 18

3.4.1. Strong inflows are propelling the market 18

3.4.2. The mixed allocation of funds buffers investors from the extremes of the stock market 19

3.5. Equities will continue to grow, but this is contingent on performance 20

3.5.1. Stock market performance rather than inflows is driving equity growth 20

3.5.2. The Danish government is introducing tax benefits to further encourage equity inflows 22

3.6. Bonds will remain a peripheral asset for retail investors 22

3.6.1. Retail investors are pulling out of bonds 22


4.1. Non-resident investments are concentrated in the equity and bond markets 24

4.1.1. Non-resident holdings accounted for 28% of total retail equity balances in 2017 24

4.1.2. The world’s largest covered bond market is proving a draw for foreign investors 25


5.1. Abbreviations and acronyms 27

5.2. Supplementary data 28

5.3. Definitions 33

5.3.1. Affluent 33

5.3.2. Domicile 34

5.3.3. Double taxation convention 34

5.3.4. Emerging affluent 34

5.3.5. FATCA 34

5.3.6. HNW 34

5.3.7. Individual 34

5.3.8. Liquid assets 35

5.3.9. Mass affluent 35

5.3.10. Mass market 35

5.3.11. Onshore 35

5.3.12. Residency 36

5.3.13. Exchange of information 36

5.3.14. TIEAs 37

5.4. Methodology 37

5.4.1. 2018 Global Wealth Managers Survey 37

5.4.2. Retail Investments Analytics 37

5.4.3. Global Wealth Model 39

5.4.4. Exchange rates 40

5.5. Bibliography 41

5.6. Further reading 42

List of Tables

List of Tables

Table 1: Number of adults in Denmark segmented by asset band (000s), 2006–11 28

Table 2: Number of adults in Denmark segmented by asset band (000s), 2012–17 29

Table 3: Number of adults in Denmark segmented by asset band (000s), 2018f–22f 30

Table 4: Retail liquid assets in Denmark segmented by asset band ($m), 2006–11 31

Table 5: Retail liquid assets in Denmark segmented by asset band ($m), 2012–17 32

Table 6: Retail liquid assets in Denmark segmented by asset band ($m), 2018f–22f 33

Table 7: US dollar exchange rates with the Danish krone 41

List of Figures

List of Figures

Figure 1: Affluent individuals accounted for 22.16% of the adult population by the end of 2017 10

Figure 2: The mass affluent segment accounts for almost half of retail liquid assets in Denmark 11

Figure 3: Danish HNWs hold 12.1% of their assets offshore 12

Figure 4: Denmark is part of the CRS early adopter group 14

Figure 5: A diversified retail savings and investments market aids growth 16

Figure 6: The decline of retail bond holdings is the only negative in the savings and investments market 17

Figure 7: Deposit growth has rallied since 2015, despite low interest rates 18

Figure 8: Strong inflows have driven consistent growth in the mutual fund market 19

Figure 9: The Danish mutual fund market is dominated by bond and equity funds 20

Figure 10: Retail investors in Denmark have been withdrawing assets from the stock market 21

Figure 11: Healthcare companies make up the majority of the Copenhagen Stock Exchange main index 22

Figure 12: Retail bond investments have been in decline since 2009 23

Figure 13: Non-resident investors are primarily drawn to Denmark’s equity and bond markets 25

Figure 14: Example of a four-input forecasting process 39


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