Bezos foils a 1-2 punch: Billionaire regains richest man status as stocks rebound
It was a whirlwind day for Jeff Bezos.
The world’s top billionaire briefly lost his spot as the richest man on Earth to Bill Gates on Friday morning, before recovering to reclaim the title by day’s end.
The Amazon founder, who also owns the Washington Post, as well as aerospace firm Blue Origin among other holdings, fell to the No. 2 spot after the e-commerce giant’s stock price tumbled 7% in after-hours trading Thursday following a disappointing earnings report.
It was the company’s first quarterly drop in profit since 2017, and it cost Bezos nearly $7 billion, lowering his net worth to $103.9 billion.
Amazon shares roared back on Friday, however, allowing Bezos to finish the day with a net worth of $111.1 billion against Gates’ $107.5 billion.
Bezos, 55, became the world’s richest man in 2018 with a net worth of $160 billion, ending Gates’ 24-year undefeated run in the top spot.
The Amazon boss first joined The Forbes 400 list of richest Americans in 1998, a year after Amazon went public, with a net worth of $1.6 billion.
Bezos’ brief slip Thursday wasn’t entirely due to his Amazon shares falling: He would never have lost the No. 1 spot if he and MacKenzie Bezos hadn’t divorced.
In January, the pair announced their split, with MacKenzie, 49, receiving a quarter of their Amazon holdings in July. With a net worth of $32.7 billion, she is among the top 20 wealthiest people in the world.
The Bezoses announced their split to fend off a news report about it — a report that included an embarrassing “below the belt” selfie Bezos intended for his mistress Lauren Sanchez.
Gates, who debuted on Forbes’ first-ever billionaire list in 1987, with a net worth of $1.25 billion, stepped down as chairman of Microsoft in 2014, though he remains a board member.
He is now the co-chairman of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
Shares of Amazon finished the day down 1.1% at $1,761.33, a bounce back from the 4.8% down the stock was at the open, while Microsoft ended Friday up 0.6%, at $140.73.
Source: Read Full Article