Proposition: The Germans should bail out the rest of the Eurozone.
Rationale: The Germans are richer than everyone else in the Eurozone.
Truth 1: Germany’s total GDP is €2.6 trillion, comfortably ahead of France (€2.0 trillion) and Italy (€1.6 trillion). (source: countryeconomy.com/gdp)
Truth 2: Germany has the most millionaires in Europe (one million people with investable assets of over $1 million) (source: Capgemini World Wealth Report)
Truth 3: German GDP per capita is €32,399, just ahead of France (€31,100) but behind Belgium (€34,100), Ireland (€35,600), the Netherlands (€35,900), Finland (€35,900), Austria (€36,600) and Luxembourg (€83,600). (source: countryeconomy.com/gdp)
Truth 4: Germany’s median net wealth per household is just €51,400, much lower than Greece (€101,900), Italy (€173,500), Spain (€182,700) and Cyprus (€266,900) (source: ECB)
Truth 4 is startling, and is best explained by the very low rate of home ownership in Germany compared to other countries, as well as the legacy of East German integration and the smaller average household size found in Germany.
Conclusion: The German economy is the biggest in the Eurozone (Truth 1), but aside from a bunch of very wealthy individuals (Truth 2) Germany’s people are not the richest. Looking at Truth 3 and Truth 4 it is easy to see why many ordinary Germans feel thoroughly aggrieved at the idea of having to bankroll the rest of the Eurozone.