Bernard Arnault Once Again The World’s Richest Person After Jeff Bezos Loses Nearly $14 Billion In One Day
Jeff Bezos is no longer the richest person on the planet, and this time it’s not because he physically left earth in a Blue Origin rocket. Amazon stock cratered 7.6% Friday after the company reported second quarter earnings Thursday afternoon—shaving $13.9 billion off its founder’s fortune in one day and pushing Bezos behind French tycoon Bernard Arnault.
Shares of Arnault’s luxury goods conglomerate LVMH fell by 1.4% Friday, making Arnault $2.9 billion poorer as well, but he still finished the week with an estimated net worth of $192.9 billion, $500 million ahead of Bezos. The two played leapfrog for the top spot in late May and early June, but Bezos had spent the last 50 days as the world’s richest person, notwithstanding his brief interstellar excursion on July 20.
After Arnault got more than $100 billion richer during the first year of the pandemic, LVMH’s rally has plateaued for most of the summer. Arnault owns a 47% stake in the company, which has a market capitalization of more than $400 billion. Its subsidiaries include Louis Vuitton, Moët & Chandon, Christian Dior and Tiffany & Co.
Despite the stock drop, Amazon was far from a failure in the second quarter. The business generated $113 billion in revenue—27% higher than the same period last year—and $7.8 billion in net profit. But stockholders were hoping the embarrassment of riches would be even larger, especially after first quarter revenue grew 44%. Amazon said Thursday that it predicts third quarter revenue to be between $106 billion and $112 billion, lower than the $119 billion analysts were expecting. Amazon’s chief financial officer, Brian Olsavsky, attributed the slowdown to people feeling more comfortable leaving home to shop and spend on other activities compared with last spring and summer during the heart of the pandemic.
Amazon’s decline also lowered the net worth of Bezos’ ex-wife MacKenzie Scott to an estimated $56 billion, a $4.6 billion drop on Friday, making her the 22nd-richest person in the world.
Aside from Bezos and Scott, most of the week’s biggest billionaire losers reside in China, where stocks continued to fall due to the country’s ongoing tech crackdown. This month, Chinese authorities forced app stores to remove ride-hailing giant Didi within days of its U.S. IPO, crippled online tutoring companies by requiring them to register as nonprofits, ordered food delivery companies to provide more protections for their drivers and required tech conglomerate Tencent to relinquish exclusive licensing rights to online music.
Tencent CEO Ma Huateng’s fortune declined by $4.7 billion to $47.5 billion this week as the company’s shares fell by 8.5%. The CSI 300 Index, which tracks the performance of the largest stocks listed in China, declined by 5.5% this week, and the Hang Seng Index tracking the Hong Kong stock market fell by 5%.
HERE ARE THE BILLIONAIRES WHOSE FORTUNES FELL THE MOST THIS WEEK.
The net worth change is from close of markets Friday, July 23 to Friday, July 30.