World's richest see $100bn in net worth wiped out as stocks fall

Around 20 billionaires lost at least US$1bn each

A display shows financial indices in Times Square, New York, Tuesday, Feb. 6, 2018. After big swings higher and lower, U.S. stocks are up slightly in afternoon trading Tuesday as investors look for calm after a global sell-off. The swings came one day after the steepest drop in 6 ½ years. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)

Swooning markets Thursday cost the world’s 500 richest people US$93 billion in net worth, and 20 of them lost at least US$1 billion each.

Jeff Bezos, the world’s richest person, saw his fortune drop by US$5.3 billion to US$113.2 billion, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, as his Inc tumbled 4.7 per cent on the day. Berkshire Hathaway chairman Warren Buffett’s wealth dropped US$3.5 billion and Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg lost US$3.4 billion.

Elon Musk came back to Earth, dropping US$1.1 billion in net worth after his Space Exploration Technologies successfully launched a Tesla sports car on a journey around the sun. Shares of Tesla, which he also leads, plunged 8.6 per cent.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average and S&P 500 Index both tumbled to their lowest levels since November as fears of rising interest rates and inflation intensified.