The One Percenters Club Gains $92 Billion
Billionaires’ combined wealth was increased by $92 billion as Alibaba rose and energy prices fell. As of December 29, their overall net worth stands at $4.1 trillion based upon the Bloomberg Billionaires Index. Naturally, the biggest gainer was Jack Ma, the co-founder of Alibaba Group Holding Ltd.(BABA), China’s largest e-commerce company. Ma started the company back in 1999 while he was an English teacher. His fortune rose by 56 percent or $25.1 billion since his company’s IPO in September. He even briefly surpassed Asia’s richest person, Li Ka-Shing. Global stocks also reached all-time highs in 2014.
Other wealthy gainers include Warren Buffet who added $13.7 billion to his net worth and Mark Zuckerberg who added $10.6 billion based upon his mobile advertising, applications and video success. Not to mention, Facebook’s acquisition of Instagram was a smart move. Instagram now has more active users than Twitter. On the other hand, things haven’t been as rosy for billionaires in Russia. For example, Vladimir Evtushenkov, one of Russia’s 14th-richest person, lost 80 percent of his wealth. Also, Leonid Mikhelson lost $7.8 billion since the beginning of 2014.
In China, the 10 richest people there added a combined $48 billion to their fortunes in 2014. It is still a toss-up regarding Asia’s richest person, but bets are on Wang Jianlin.
There are also the hidden billionaires such as Jonathan Lu, CEO of Alibaba and the Pastor family of Monaco who are heirs to a $13 billion fortune after the family’s matriarch, Helene Pastor, was gunned down in a Nice, France parking lot.
Latin America isn’t without its wealth winners such as Joesley, Wesley, Valere, Vanessa and Vivianne Batista of Brazil. In addition, it didn’t hurt to have a strong dollar, which helps exports. It certainly looks like many of the rich are getting richer, hopefully, good news for all.