Elon Musk loses his position at the top of Forbes’ annual billionaires list
Elon Musk has officially been dethroned from from the top of Forbes’ annual “World’s Billionaire’s List.”
The Tesla and Twitter chief is now the second-richest billionaire, worth an estimated $180 billion, which is $39 billion less than the previous year. The top spot has been awarded to Bernard Arnault, the chairman of French luxury goods giant LVMH. His net worth increased more than $50 billion in the past year to $211 billion.
This shouldn’t come as a surprise to Musk, whose position wobbled on the Forbes’ “Real-Time Billionaire’s” list, which is updated daily, for the past several months. He and Arnault often switch places.
However, Tuesday’s list tracks his wealth annually. Forbes explained that his wealth had fallen because his $44 billion Twitter purchase funded by Tesla shares scared investors and sent Tesla stock sinking sharply last year. Tesla gained much of those losses back this year but is still significantly lower than before Musk bought Twitter.
Forbes said that “Musk has mostly tweeted himself out of the top spot on the ranks” because Tesla shares are down 50% since his Twitter takeover a year ago. SpaceX is a bright spot for the billionaire, the magazine notes, since its valuation has increased $13 billion to $140 billion over the past year.
Amazon founder Jeff Bezos lost the most amount of money of any billionaire on the list ($57 billion) and knocked him down from the second position to the third. The loss can be attributed to Amazon shares losing nearly 40% of their value last year.
As for Arnault, Forbes said the Frenchman had a “banner year” in 2022 because of record-high profits at the luxury conglomerate, which comprises of Louis Vuitton, Christian Dior and Tiffany & Co. Shares of LVMH have climbed 25% over the past year and the patriarch has recently unveiled succession plans to his children.
Forbes’ said that the total number of billionaires on this year’s list fell to 2,640 (down from 2,668), marking the second straight years of decline.
“It’s been another rare down year for the planet’s richest people,” said Chase Peterson-Withorn, Forbes senior editor of Wealth, in a release. “Nearly half the list is poorer than they were 12 months ago, but a lucky few are billions — or even tens of billions — of dollars richer.”