The world’s five richest tech billionaires collectively lost $85.07 billion of their wealth in the first few weeks of 2022 due to a market rout. Stock markets dropped the most last week since the outbreak of the pandemic on fears of rising interest rates and inflation. The tech-heavy Nasdaq index slid 8% last week and is down 13% this year.
The losses sent the fortune of the world’s richest person, Elon Musk, down to $243 billion. The net worth of the SpaceX and Tesla founder tumbled $27 billion since the start of the year, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index. Data shows it is nearly $100 billion lower than November 2021, when Musk’s net worth peaked at $335 billion.
The world’s second-richest person, Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, has lost around $25 billion in 2022. Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates saw a $9.5 billion drop in his net worth since January 1, while Google co-founder Larry Page’s net worth declined by $12 billion. Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg’s net worth (sixth on Bloomberg’s rich list) also nosedived by about $12 billion so far this year. All of them saw losses in their tech stock holdings.
The only billionaire in the top five who avoided losses last week was French luxury fashion mogul Bernard Arnault. Even so, the wealth of the chairman and CEO of the luxury giant LVMH is down $10.5 billion so far this year. Arnault is on the cusp of re-taking the number two spot in the Bloomberg index from Bezos.
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