Europeans have three times more financial assets than total debt – assets significantly higher than before the financial crisis

If you add all the financial assets together, Europeans have EUR 33.8 trillion in assets. 38% of this amount is accounted for by insurance and pension claims, 30% by bank balances and 25% by securities investments. If one understands the statisticians correctly, no real estate assets are contained in this 33.8 trillion euro. If so, the value would of course be considerably higher. Because how would you determine such values? After all, it would be necessary to evaluate all land and houses in the EU. In terms of expenditure and probably hardly feasible for Eurostat – and also an objective evaluation criterion for the value of all these properties would be hard to find.


But it´s interesting to note that even without real estate assets, financial assets are still three times as large as the debts of EU citizens with a total of EUR 10.1 trillion. 90% of these are classical bank loans. According to Eurostat, a large part of this loans are from real estate financing. Citizens’ debts have remained relatively stable over the last few years, in relation to the EU’s total gross domestic product, at 70%.

Assets higher then before financial crisis

But the assets that are now significantly higher than before the financial crisis. In 2006, they were 213% of gross domestic product. They fell to 182% by 2008. In 2009 they rose again to 205% and were 230% in 2016. What might be the reason for this? The statisticians don´t give any precise information about this, but it seems obvious that savings deposits have not been able to increase your assets in the last ten years (zero interest rates). This was only possible thanks to the record levels on the stock markets!

In the following chart, the assets in relation to GDP (excluding real estate) are shown in blue for each EU member state, and the debts in relation to GDP, including real estate debt, are shown in red.

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