Billionaires Wealth Hit New Record High Amid Pandemic; Moves Past $10 Trillion

Billionaires Wealth Hit New Record High Amid Pandemic; Moves Past $10 Trillion”

The UBS report did not rank the fortunes of the world's wealth, but the richest person on the planet is Jeff Bezos, the founder and chief executive of Amazon, with US$189 billion. Within the industrial sector, UBS and PwC identified 54% of billionaires as innovators and disruptors, while consumer & retail has 41%. For instance, software giants such as Microsoft and Oracle - both effectively "billionaire factories", having hatched several billionaires - are quickly moving into areas such as AI, cloud computing and software as a service.

Says Josef Stadler, head of the Global Family Office unit at UBS Global Wealth Management: "This is a key moment in economic history".

"As the storm passes, a new generation of entrepreneurs looks likely to digitize, refresh and revolutionize the economy", the report found.

UBS Bank and the London-based network PwC, which specializes in providing multinational professional services, said that billionaires' wealth has reached record levels in light of the Covid-19 outbreak, the recovery of stock prices and gains on exchanges in technology and healthcare.

During 2018, 2019 and the first seven months of 2020, four technology billionaires' total wealth rose by 42.5% to $1.8tn whilst healthcare billionaires' total wealth increased by 50.3% to $658.6bn, boosted by a new age of drug discovery and innovations in diagnostics and medical technology, along with COVID-19 treatments and equipment. Stating that billionaires managed the COVID-19 crisis very successfully, UBS stated that the number of billionaires increased from 2,158 in 2017 to 2,189 in 2020. The sectors that grew the most were industry and technology sectors.

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For the report, UBS and PwC analysed data from 2189 billionaires in 43 countries and conducted interviews with 60 billionaires. By early April 2020, their wealth had grown nearly nine-fold over the decade, while that of their peers in the United States had doubled.

Faster wealth growth in businesses geared for the future economy has been an ongoing process in recent years and has resulted in a growing gap compared to traditional businesses.

According to the report, the pandemic initially had an impact on the world's billionaires.

Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories. Meanwhile, the worst-off billionaires amid the pandemic were those in real estate. They are seeking to make a positive impact across all activities - philanthropy, corporate and investment - as opposed to looking exclusively to a charitable foundation. While companies in online shopping and technology were positive, the billionaires at the head of these companies also added wealth to their fortunes.

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