News and Society

Almost 500 People Became Billionaires During The Pandemic COVID-19

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos; Tesla CEO Elon Musk; LVMH CEO Bernard Arnault; and Microsoft cofounder Bill Gates. MANDEL NGAN/AFP via Getty Images; Britta Pedersen-Pool/Getty Images; Nicholas Kamm/Getty

  • The world’s richest are $5 trillion richer than they were one year ago, according to Forbes.
  • Executives like Jeff Bezos, Elon Musk, and Bernard Arnault all saw massive gains amid the
  • Pandemic.Meanwhile, 2020 was a period of economic uncertainty and job losses for millions of people.

That’s according to Forbes, which released its annual billionaires list on Tuesday. Forbes found that the world’s wealthiest people, many of whom are recognizable as the top names in the business world, are $5 trillion richer than they were one year ago.

As the pandemic wreaked havoc on most of the world over the past year, many of the world’s richest people saw their fortunes rise, and 660 more people were added to the Forbes global billionaires list, the magazine said Tuesday.

The business magazine’s 35th annual list grew to 2,755 individuals who together are worth $13.1 trillion, up from $8 trillion on the 2020 list. Together, 86 percent the group is better off than they were last year. Nearly 500 first-time billionaires were added to the list, including Bumble dating app cofounder Whitney Wolfe Herd and TV producer Tyler Perry.

For the fourth year in a row, Amazon founder Jeff Bezos is the world’ richest person with a net worth of $177 billion, up from $113 billion last year. Close behind at $151 billion is Elon Musk of Tesla, whose net worth soared from $24.6 billion last year. Musk is a major proponent of bitcoin, the cryptocurrency that has exploded in popularity and value over the past year.

world’s richest became $5 trillion richer

The magazine uses stock prices and exchange rates from March 5 to calculate the net worths of billionaires.

The Forbes report found the total number of billionaires grew to 2,755, with 660 more than a year ago.

A total of 493 were newly added to the list, Forbes reported.

Further, the report said 250 people who had fallen off the list in the past were re-added, and 86 per cent of the billionaires are more wealthy now than they were just 12 months ago.

At the top of the list, for a fourth year in a row is Amazon founder Jeff Bezos who is worth a reported $177 billion.

Elon Musk is now the second-richest billionaire, with a net worth of $151 billion.

Elon Musk, the Tesla and SpaceX mogul, rocketed into second place with a net worth of $151bn, a jump of $126.4bn compared with a year ago. VMH boss Bernard Arnault, Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates and Facebook chief executive Mark Zuckerberg rounded out the top five.

However, the list didn’t make happy reading for Donald Trump, with the former president falling 300 places and losing more than $1 billion during his time in office.

Mr Trump’s fortune fell by nearly a third, from $3.5 billion to $2.4 billion, putting him 1,299th in the list.

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