In the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic, governments and central banks unleashed unprecedented stimulus measures but the present erosion of wealth is a sharp departure from the previous two years. Billionaires including Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos, Mark Zuckerberg, Bernard Arnault, and Changpeng Zhao have lost billions in the first half of 2022.
The dizzying decline that marks the steepest six-month drop ever for the global billionaire class adversely affected the world’s 500 richest people.
Although billionaires made a fortune during the pandemic, they are now losing altitude fast with policymakers now raising interest rates to combat elevated inflation.
With policymakers now raising interest rates to combat elevated inflation, Tesla Inc. had its worst quarter ever in the three months through June.
According to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, Musk is the wealthiest man on the planet with a net worth of $208.5 billion followed by Amazon’s Bezos with a $129.6 billion net worth and Bernard Arnault with a $128.7 billion fortune.
Thorne Perkin, president of Papamarkou Wellner Asset Management, told Bloomberg that the billionaire class has amassed so much wealth in recent years that they can withstand the worst first half since 1970 for the S&P 500 Index.
“Often their mindset is a bit more contrarian. A lot of our clients look for opportunities when there’s trouble in the streets,” Perkin said.
Global stock markets have plunged after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine but amid the fallout Moscow’s wealthiest man Vladimir Potanin with a $35.2 billion fortune, acquired Societe Generale SA’s entire position in Rosbank PJSC.
After the app-based brokerage’s share price tumbled 77 per cent from its hotly anticipated initial public offering last July, Sam Bankman-Fried, chief executive officer of crypto exchange FTX, bought a 7.6 per cent stake in Robinhood Markets Inc.