CHART: Australia's love of share ownership is declining

Wait in line to take a picture with the bronze bull of Wall Street. Spencer Platt/Getty Images

The proportion of Australians owning shares is falling, according to the latest numbers released by the ASX.

In 2014, 6.48 million people, or 36% of the adult population, had shares either directly or indirectly with a managed fund.

This is a decline from 38% total ownership recorded when the Australian Share Ownership Study was last conducted in 2012.

This chart shows the decline of share ownership:

The study does not measure share ownership through superannuation other than those held in self-managed superannuation funds.

On an international scale, share ownership in Australia is high. At 36% we are the same as Hong Kong but well ahead of the UK at 15% and the US at 14%.

The ASX says the number of Australians holding shares directly only is stable at 26%.

And more Australians are investing in international shares, about 13%, up from 10% in 2012.

The 2014 study, the 14th in a series dating back to 1991, was conducted nationally from September to November last year with more than 6,400 people.

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