The stock market crash in 2018 shredded billions off the wealthiest Americans. A staggering $76 billion were wiped off their balance sheets. Still, new billionaires were added to the infamous Forbes list, while some industry investors saw their fortune increase and decrease, at the same time, per a Bloomberg report.
Fifteen individuals were added to the Forbes 400 list of wealthiest Americans this year. Twelve of those were self-made entrepreneurs, who have built their fortunes in areas such as e-commerce, transportation, and digital currencies (first time).
At the same time, the Bloomberg Billionaire Index saw 31 additions in total, even though $500 billion in wealth was wiped out due to global trade tensions and an unpredictable President, Donald Trump. So who won big and who saw the worst losses in 2018?
Clear Winner of 2018: Jeff Bezos
Jeff Bezos, CEO of Amazon Inc. and the wealthiest individual on the planet, tops the list of winners of 2018.
Jeff Bezos claimed the Iron Throne as the wealthiest man in the world. While he seemed to be engaged in a wrestle for the title with Microsoft owner Bill Gates in 2017, Bezos solidified his place at the top this year. His fortune increased with $26 billion in 2018. The 2018 Amazon rally gave him a net worth of $125 billion and made Bezos the biggest gainer for the second consecutive year.
Tim Sweeney, the Creator of Fortnite
Tim Sweeney, the founder of Epic Games that has made Fortnite, was another big winner of 2018. The video game became an instant phenomenon in 2018 breaking multiple records.
The popularity of the video game increased Tim Sweeney’s wealth with $3.6 billion in 2018. The game might have gotten its fair share of criticism, but for Tim Sweeney 2018 has been an incredible booster.
Sweeney’s company, the privately held Epic Games, was effectively taken over by Tencent in 2012 for $330 million. Tencent Holdings Limited now owns 40% of the company.
2018 Biggest Loser: Mark Zuckerberg and Facebook Inc.
The last 12 months have been disastrous for Facebook Inc. and Mark Zuckerberg. The public became aware of multiple data breaches, and the Facebook share price has plummeted.
From the Cambridge Analytica privacy scandal to the departure of WhatsApp founder Jan Koum and its disappointing second-quarter earnings. The 34-year-old Zuckerberg saw his net worth drop by $20.7 billion, leaving him with a net worth of $52 billion.
Another Tech Loser: Evan Spiegel and Snapchat (Snap Inc.)
Evan Spiegel, CEO of Snap Inc., has experienced the worst year since Snapchat became a public company trading under Snap Inc.
Snapchat’s losses for 2018 were affected by the earnings of Snap Inc. with the company’s stock selling for an all-time low of $4.99 on Friday. Fear of Snapchat’s ability to compete with platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram has created uncertainty for the technology company. Celebrities and users have heavily criticized Snapchat over issues such as its redesign and selection of ads.
Featured image from Shutterstock. Charts from TradingView.