Two articles (below) came out today with estimates of the size and growth potential of Islamic finance. They both come in on the low side of estimates I have seen (the highest being from Moody's at $750 billion and $750-1,000 billion from an unpublished draft document created by the Islamic Research & Training Institute (IRTI) and the Islamic Financial Standards Board (IFSB)). While I have no data to suggest that these estimates are too high, back of the envelope calculations suggest that the Islamic financial industry is between $230 and $480 billion in 2006, just assuming that it held $100 billion in assets in 2000 and has been growing between 15 and 30 percent per year since then. Regardless of the exact figure the Islamic financial industry has been growing at an astonishingly high rate, particularly in the past five years and looks set to continue growing rapidly into the future.
"S&P: Islamic Fin Meets Just 10% Of Muslim Community Market ", Dow Jones, October 25, 2006
Standard & Poor today came out with an estimate that there are $400 billion in Shari'ah-compliant assets worldwide. The industry, S&P estimates, is only serving 10 percent of the market's total potential demand of $4 trillion worldwide.
"There are now over 300 institutions offering Shariah compliant banking, with an asset base around US$250bn-500bn", Research & Markets Press Release (via Yahoo! Business), October 25, 2006