Elon Musk set records last year for one of the fastest streaks of wealth accumulation in history. The reversal is underway, and it’s steep.
The Tesla Inc. chief executive officer lost $27 billion since Monday as shares of the automaker tumbled in the selloff of tech stocks. His $156.9 billion net worth still places him No. 2 on the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, but he’s now almost $20 billion behind Jeff Bezos, who he topped just last week as world’s richest person.
Tesla shares soared 743 percent in 2020, boosting the value of Musk’s stake and unlocking billions of dollars in options through his historic compensation package.
His gains accelerated into the new year. In January, he unseated Bezos as the world’s richest person. Musk’s fortune peaked later that month at $210 billion, according to the index, a ranking of the world’s 500 wealthiest people.
Tesla disclosed last month it had added $1.5 billion of the cryptocurrency Bitcoin to its balance sheet. Musk’s fortune took a $15 billion hit two weeks later after he mused on twitter that the prices of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies “do seem high.”
Extreme volatility has roiled many of the world’s biggest fortunes this year.
Asia’s once-richest person, Chinese bottled-water tycoon Zhong Shanshan, relinquished the title to Indian billionaire Mukesh Ambani last month after losing more than $22 billion in a matter of days.