The 20 richest tech billionaires have lost over $500 billion!

The 20 richest billionaires in the technology sector have collectively lost nearly $500 billion this year amid the steep decline in stock markets, a loss of wealth greater than the market value of all companies in the S&P 500, except for seven of them.

The world’s wealthiest tech moguls – including Mark Zuckerberg, Bill Gates and Larry Ellison – have seen more than $480 billion in wealth disappear this year through Thursday, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, a daily ranking of the richest people in the world. Disappointing earnings reports from a series of tech giants this week have fueled recession fears, dented stock prices and weighed on the fortunes of the world’s wealthiest people.

Mark Zuckerberg’s net worth fell by $11.2 billion on Thursday, according to the ranking. Shares of his company, Facebook’s parent company, Meta lost a quarter of their value after a disappointing earnings report spooked investors. The company’s revenue slowed for the second straight quarter and losses from its big metaverse bet increased.

Since the start of the year, the Meta CEO’s fortune has shrunk by more than $87 billion. That leaves him with a current net worth of $37.7 billion, making him the 28th richest person in the world, according to the index. For comparison, it was in the top 10 earlier in the year.

Tech companies, which experienced strong growth at the start of the pandemic, are now feeling the effects of high inflation, rising interest rates and slowing digital advertising growth. Many companies are now controlling their costs, monitoring their workforce, and even laying off employees. The tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite Index has fallen 29% this year through Friday’s close.

For many executives and founders, their wealth is at least partially tied to the actions of their company. This means that large swings in their company’s stock price can have a profound impact on their wealth measurement.

World’s richest person Elon Musk and Amazon founder Jeff Bezos have each seen more than $58 billion in wealth disappear this year. The two entrepreneurs have in the past fought over the bragging rights of being the richest person in the world before Elon Musk took a huge lead.

Elon Musk, chief executive of Tesla, also heads rocket company SpaceX. He founded Boring Co, an underground tunneling company, as well as neuroscience start-up Neuralink Corp. And this week, it finalized its takeover, on and off, of Twitter. and will privatize the social media company. Musk is currently worth $212 billion.

Jeff Bezos’ fortune, meanwhile, is valued at $134 billion. Amazon shares fell 7% on Friday as Wall Street was disappointed by the company’s sales forecast for the current quarter, which fell short of analysts’ expectations.

The co-founders of Google’s parent company Alphabet, Larry Page and Sergey Brin, who are among the 10 richest people in the world, have also seen their net worth decline. They each lost more than $40 billion in paper value this year, and were both hit this week after Alphabet reported its first-ever year-over-year decline in YouTube ad sales.

Most of the wealthiest tech entrepreneurs are American tech moguls, but a few aren’t from the United States. Jack Ma, for example, made his e-commerce giant Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. one of China’s largest trading empires. He’s lost $9.3 billion in wealth this year, according to the index, and his net worth is currently $29.1 billion.

The only woman among the 20 richest tech moguls is MacKenzie Scott, the billionaire philanthropist who built her fortune setting up Amazon with her now ex-husband, Jeff Bezos. More than $29 billion has disappeared from her net worth this year, but some of that can be attributed to the big checks she has written. She is committed to donating — and has already donated — billions of dollars to organizations including food banks, the Girl Scouts of the USA and historically black colleges and universities.

According to the index, of the 20 richest billionaires in the tech sector, only two have increased their profits since January 1. The fortune of Zhang Yiming, the founder of ByteDance Ltd, owner of TikTok, has grown by $10.4 billion and he is now worth $54.9 billion. Robert Pera, founder of wireless equipment maker Ubiquiti Inc. and owner of the NBA’s Memphis Grizzlies, saw his fortune increase by $1.3 billion, giving him a net worth of $14.7 billion .

The paper losses of many of the world’s biggest tech moguls come after the collective wealth of billionaires grew more in the first two years of the Covid-19 pandemic than between 1987 and 2010, according to the anti-poverty group Oxfam International earlier this year.

According to Oxfam, during the first months of the pandemic, a new billionaire was created every 30 hours.

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