Who are the billionaires who got richer in 2021 and how to explain the incredible increase in their fortunes - Start Up Gazzete
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Who are the billionaires who got richer in 2021 and how to explain the incredible increase in their fortunes


The 500 richest people on the planet had a spectacular year.

The combined fortune of these “super-rich” reached the historical record of US $ 8.4 trillion , an amount far greater than the size of the economy of great powers such as Japan, Germany or the United Kingdom, and the combined Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of all Latin America.

Wall Street rolled out the red carpet for them with a gigantic surge in the stock market that pushed the wealth of the tycoons to levels never seen before.

As stocks rose , so did the price of properties, cryptocurrencies, commodities and many other products, despite the second year of the pandemic that still keeps many developing countries unable to raise their heads.

That’s how the combined wealth of these 500 tycoons climbed more than $ 1 trillion, as if the foot were on the gas with no restriction on the speed limit, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index .

Elon Musk’s record

Among the 10 richest magnates of the planet, which saw the largest increase in his fortune was the founder of Tesla and SpaceX, Elon Musk, with an overwhelming increase of one 75% in just one year , leaving far behind in the ranking to others moguls like Jeff Bezos or Bill Gates.

As if a net worth of US $ 273.5 billion were not enough, in the first days of this year Musk beat his own record, when this Tuesday he added another US $ 32 billion to his fortune.

The fortunes that grew the most among the 10 richest tycoons on the planet

(Percentage of increase in equity in 1 year)

  • Elon Musk 75%‘Text’
  • Larry Page57%
  • Sergey brin56%
  • Bernard arnault55%
  • Steve Ballmerfifty%
  • Larry ellison36%

Source: Bloomberg Billionaires Index.

The jump came after Tesla’s share price soared, following the announcement that the electric car maker launched 936,000 vehicles last year , a brand that far exceeded analyst projections.

Musk is followed by other super-rich like Google co-founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin (with their fortunes rising last year of 57% and 56%, respectively).

Larry Page and Sergey Brin
Larry Page and Sergey Brin founded Google more than 20 years ago.

Rounding out the list are the founder of the luxury brand business empire LVMH, Bernard Arnault (55%), and former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer (50%).


In what context does this increase in wealth occur?

To the extent that the wealthiest benefited from large stock market gains – in a year when interest rates were historically low and both central banks and governments pumped a lot of money into economies – lower-income people and the most vulnerable countries were not part of the stock market party.

Container ship

It is that the recovery of the economic impact that the covid-19 has left has been uneven and much of the GDP growth that the countries showed during the past year is due to a ” rebound effect” because the comparison base with 2020 is very low.

And, on the other hand, much of the growth in recent months has been driven by factors such as consumption or the increase in the price of raw materials, but it is not a productive growth that shows a more fundamental recovery.

Latin America is far from returning to its pre-pandemic expansion levels, which were already low in 2019.

Globally, 40% of the poorest population have not yet begun to recover their lost income due to the pandemic and more than 100 million people fell into extreme poverty due to COVID-19, according to the World Bank.

But not all billionaires did well …

China’s financial elite had its worst year since Bloomberg began monitoring wealth in 2012, racking up losses of nearly $ 61 billion when the government launched an offensive to counter the power of big tech, amid high debt. from the private sector.

Hui Ka Yan, once the second richest person in China, lost $ 17 billion in wealth after his empire, Evergrande, collapsed as it became the world’s most indebted real estate company.

Xu Jiayin
Hui Ka Yan’s company, Evergrande, is the world’s most indebted real estate company.

Market analyst projections for 2022 suggest that this year will continue to present good conditions for investors, but the huge gains of 2021 are not expected, according to nearly 50 financial institutions surveyed by Bloomberg .

One of the issues that keeps those who manage large fortunes attentive is the increase in inflationary pressures , a concern that also has governments and central banks waiting to make decisions.

Looking ahead to 2022, economists have argued that the future of the economic recovery will be subject to a multiplicity of factors such as, for example, the new variants of covid-19, the vaccination process, inflationary pressures, in addition to the course that the economy takes. international trade and the evolution of political conflicts such as the relationship between the US and China, or Russia’s threats to Ukraine.

So far, one area where there seems to be consensus is that in 2023 things should be much better than they are today.

Author avatar
Joshua Smith

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