wealthy yacht
An Emirati man poses for a picture in front of a 38-metre yacht on display at the Dubai International Boat Show AFP

The world's richest individuals with at least $20m to their names - dubbed the 1% - are even wealthier than we think as two studies show their bank balances are beyond measure.

According to two separate studies, one by European Central Bank economist Philip Vermeulen and the other by London School of Economics' Gabriel Zucman, the richest people in the world are even wealthier than we can calculate from public records because many "hide their cash in tax shelters or don't respond to questionnaires" about their personal finance.

Zucman's data shows that the US' top 1% held at least 23.5% of America's wealth as of 2012, up from 21.5% from previous estimates.

Data conducted by Vermeulen, shows that the uber wealthy actually how 37% of total wealth in 2010, which is higher than the Federal Reserve's Survey of Consumer Finances' estimate of 34% due to the small sample size of respondents.

The wealth of Europe's richest is also tipped to be more heavily underestimated than their American counterparts.

Zucman says Europe's 1% have 10% of their wealth in offshore accounts, compared to US individuals storing 4% of their assets abroad, meaning its even harder to know exactly how much money they have in total.

Moreover, the US government is estimated to have 'lost' $36bn (£21.4bn, €26.9bn) "from nonpayment of income, investment, inheritance and estate taxes", as the country's wealthiest hides away a bulk of cash in offshore accounts.

Europe is said to lose €75bn for the same reasons.