By Sheila Dang for Reuters / IOL
Forbes’ annual world’s billionaires list includes a record-breaking 2,755 billionaires, with Amazon.com founder Jeff Bezos topping it for the fourth consecutive year, the media company said on Tuesday.
The ranks of the ultra-wealthy are expanding after a year in which the coronavirus pandemic upended world economies and threatened the livelihoods of people across the globe.
This year’s billionaires are worth a combined $13.1 trillion (R190.08 trillion), up from $8 trillion last year, Forbes said.
“The very, very rich got very, very richer,” said Forbes’ chief content officer Randall Lane, in an interview with Reuters Video News.
Tesla Chief Executive Elon Musk jumped into second spot on the list, up from 31st last year.
Bernard Arnault, chief executive of luxury goods firm LVMH, Microsoft founder Bill Gates and Facebook Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg round out the top five of the world’s richest billionaires.
Investor and business tycoon Warren Buffett fell out of the top five for the first time in over two decades, as tech executives dominate the Forbes rankings.
This year’s list has 493 newcomers, including Whitney Wolfe Herd, chief executive of dating app Bumble, which went public this year.
The 10 most wealthy people in the world are:
- Jeff Bezos
- Elon Musk
- Bernard Arnault
- Bill Gates
- Mark Zuckerberg
- Warren Buffet
- Larry Ellison
- Larry Page
- Sergey Brin
- Mukesh Ambani
According to the 2019 South African Wealth Report by New World Wealth, South Africa’s richest people are:
- Diamond magnate Nicky Oppenheimer, with a net worth of $7.3 billion
- Luxury goods boss Johann Rupert, with a net worth of $5.5 billion
- Mining and minerals tycoon Patrice Motsepe, with a net worth of $2.4 billion
- Media mogul Koos Bekker, with a net worth of $2.3 billion
- Capitec founder Michiel le Roux, with a net worth of $1.2 billion
Here are some stats on the wealthy, as per The Citizen:
- South Africa has 40 000 dollar millionaires
- There are five dollar billionaires living in the country
- Nine more dollar billionaires were born in SA but no longer live here, such as Douw Steyn
- 16 600 dollar millionaire call Johannesburg home
- Total private wealth held by people in SA totals $649-billion
- SA is the 31st largest wealth market in the world
- There are about 2 200 homes in South Africa valued at more than R20-million – and Johannesburg and Cape Town have 900 of them
- The most expensive streets in the country are in Cape Town, with property fetching R90 000 a square metre
- Financial and professional services (30%), real estate (16%) and tech and telecoms (9%) account for the sectors where the rich made their money
- The most lucrative university degrees in terms of percentages of high net-worth individuals (HNWIs) are law (28%), finance and economics (19%) and accounting (9%)
- An estimated 3 000 HNWIs have emigrated from South Africa in the past 10 years
By Melanie Kramer for Money Makers
Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg has lost $17.4 billion, suffering from Facebook’s reputation and share price this year. He’s not the only billionaire to lose out in 2018, but he’s currently the most famous and has certainly lost more than any other.
Zuckerberg has dropped from being the third-richest person in the world to becoming the sixth richest, according to Bloomberg’s Billionaires Index. Zuckerberg now has a net worth of $55.3 billion.
The Facebook founder has faced increasing criticism over the ongoing Cambridge Analytica data scandal and Facebook’s response to the apparent social media influence exerted by Russia in US elections.
Data privacy is still an unresolved issue in the eyes of many global governments. Some seek answers over how their citizen’s personal information is handled and how Facebook will prevent illicit behavior in the future.
Just two weeks ago the UK and Canadian Parliaments summoned Zuckerberg to personally answer their questions, in an unprecedented joint move.
Facebook shares fell 3% on Friday to their lowest point since April 2017, and to a value of $139.53.
The latest fall in Facebook’s share price followed a call last week by four US Democratic senators to answer questions about Facebook’s use of contractors to spread “intentionally inflammatory information.”
According to reports, Facebook had hired a consulting firm founded by Republican strategists as part of its response to the concerns over Russian meddling. The firm’s subsequent actions are under scrutiny.
Zuckerberg’s Chan Zuckerberg Initiative is a major US political donor and Facebook co-founder Dustin Moskovitz has also donated over $35 million to Democratic and Liberal candidates and groups.
By Jason Karaian for Quartz
This week, Amazon founder Jeff Bezos saw his net worth soar above $150 billion, giving him the most billions among all the billionaires on the billionaire lists. Bill Gates, in second place, is worth a modest $94 billion, according to Forbes. Bezos first appeared on Forbes’ list in 1998, with a $1.6 billion fortune.
He made that much this week alone, on paper, as Amazon’s shares jumped in anticipation of “bigger than ever” sales on Prime Day, which ran from Monday to Tuesday. Amazon is now worth nearly $900 billion, and Bezos owns around 16% of the company’s shares. He became the world’s richest person earlier this year.
Although he is clearly doing pretty well for himself, a financial advisor might tell Bezos that he should consider diversifying his portfolio. It’s rarely wise to concentrate one’s wealth in a single asset, whether it’s a house or shares in a company you founded in a garage in the 1990s that now accounts for half of all e-commerce sales in the US.
So let’s say Bezos wanted to add some exposure to Europe. He’s familiar with Luxembourg—Amazon does a lot of business there. He could buy some stocks there. Or, actually, he could buy all the stocks in Luxembourg. Twice.
The Amazon founder’s vast wealth is enough to buy several countries’ stock markets outright. Currently, for example, he could purchase every company listed in Ireland, another popular place for tech firms, and still have a few billion dollars left over. Bezos may be better off, though, sticking with Amazon, which has gained more than 50% this year, adding around $50 billion—the total market cap of the Egyptian exchange—to the founder’s net worth.
Forbes has released its list of the richest people in the cryptocurrency community.
The net worth of those on the rich list is denoted in range estimates based on estimated cryptocurrency holdings, post-tax profits from cryptocurrency trades, and stakes in cryptocurrency-related businesses.
The net worth estimates reflect the estimated holdings of the rich list as of 19 January 2018.
Forbes acknowledged that it may have missed certain major cryptocurrency holders due to the obfuscated nature of blockchain transactions.
The top 10 richest people in cryptocurrency, according to Forbes, are below: