Business

Gates second member of $100 billion club

Amazon.com's Bezos was its only member at first

Abaca Press/TNS

Bill Gates speaks during the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation’s Goalkeepers 2017 event at Lincoln Center in New York City in 2017.
Abaca Press/TNS Bill Gates speaks during the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation’s Goalkeepers 2017 event at Lincoln Center in New York City in 2017.

Bloomberg tracks the fortunes of some 2,800 billionaires. Of those, 145 are worth at least $10 billion, making them decabillionaires. Now, the world contains two centibillionaires simultaneously.

Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates, once the world’s richest person, has again eclipsed the $100 billion threshold, joining Amazon.com’s Jeff Bezos in the exclusive club, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index.

Gates’s fortune, now $100 billion on the nose, hasn’t reached such heights since the dot-com boom, when Bezos was only beginning his march up the world’s wealth rankings.

The Amazon founder is now worth $145.6 billion, having added $20.7 billion this year alone, while Gates has gained $9.5 billion.

These two fortunes underscore a widening wealth gap in the United States, where those with the most capital are accumulating riches the fastest.

It’s also a worldwide trend. France’s Bernard Arnault has an $86.2 billion fortune, equal to about 3 percent of his country’s economy. The net worth of Spain’s Amancio Ortega represents 5 percent of that nation’s gross domestic product. And then there’s Bidzina Ivanishvili, who’s worth about a third of Georgia’s GDP.

The Gates and Bezos mega-fortunes may not last long. Gates has donated more than $35 billion to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and said he intends to give away at least half of his wealth.

ARTICLE CONTINUES BELOW ADVERTISEMENT

Bezos, meanwhile, may be about to cede some of his fortune for a different reason: he and his wife Mackenzie are divorcing.

The Bloomberg Billionaires Index ranks the world’s 500 wealthiest people. The combined net worth of the group has surged $505.8 billion this year to $5.3 trillion.

Give us feedback

We value your trust and work hard to provide fair, accurate coverage. If you have found an error or omission in our reporting, tell us here.

Or if you have a story idea we should look into? Tell us here.

Give us feedback

We value your trust and work hard to provide fair, accurate coverage. If you have found an error or omission in our reporting, tell us here.

Or if you have a story idea we should look into? Tell us here.