According to a study of the University of Anvers carried out in collaboration with KU Leuven and the University of Liège, and as repeated by De Standaard Thursday, 1% of Belgians own approximately half the shares quoted in the stock market and close to one-third of bonds. According to this study, the wealthiest 10% of Belgians – households possessing over 702,000 euros in net assets – own up to 85% or 86% of shares and bonds. This 10% commonly also benefit from a second residence in addition to their own home (65.5%). Inversely, the less affluent half of Belgians, whose net property amounts to less than 206,000 euros, own very few bonds (0.7%), shares (1%) or a second residence (5%).
The study therefore confirms that a tax on the income arising from bonds, shares and savings would particularly affect the wealthiest households, and to a lesser degree the middle class, although this would depend on the criteria employed for defining this middle class. As well, households with considerable assets may dispose of relatively low income, either because the yield on assets is less than expected or from lack of salary income.