Billionaires are getting even richer during COVID-19 pandemic ─Study

*Despite recent economic turmoil resulting from Coronavirus crisis, the wealthiest class is continuing to make money

*Some 209 billionaires have publicly committed a total of $7.2 billion through financial donations, manufactured goods, equipment, and other commitments in combating the pandemic

Isola Moses | ConsumerConnect

In spite of the damaging effects of the novel Coronavirus disease on several economies across the world, a fresh research shows that the COVID-19 pandemic has had a silver lining for a particular segment of the world population.

ConsumerConnect learnt that the period is a very large silver lining that helped to lift total billionaire wealth to an all-time high of $10.2 trillion during the raging crisis.

According to report, the latest edition of Billionaires Insights from Swiss Bank UBS and accounting firm PwC indicated that the $10.2 trillion mark came quickly.

Billionaire wealth was at $8 trillion at the beginning of April 2020, but a V-shaped market bounce helped total wealth grow by more than 27 percent by the end of June.

The total number of nouveau riche billionaires also grew by 31, hitting a new high at 2,189 extra-fat cats.

Jeff Bezos, Amazon Founder and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) was said to have had a particularly sweet ride up.

Bezos added more than $68 billion of worth year-to-date, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index.

But how did they do it amid the crisis? The report suggests that the billionaires’ club was fed by every single industry, but those in the industrial, technology, and healthcare sectors saw their wallets fatten the most.

These wealthy elite increased their wealth by 36 to 44 percent during the three-month period between April and June.

Investments in technology and health care produced the largest growth, more than quadrupling the growth billionaires made off the 2009 global financial crisis and nearly double what they reaped off the 2015 oil price crash.

The report stated: “Industrials benefited disproportionately as markets priced in a significant economic recovery, while tech companies performed well both due to the corona-induced demand for their goods and services, and markets discounting the value of their future cash flows in a low interest rate environment.

“By contrast, real estate lagged with a 13.2 percent rebound as equity markets doubted the strength of future demand for office and retail property.”

Given the windfall the billionaire class is experiencing during the pandemic, it’s fair to wonder where all that money will go.

PwC surveyed 84 of its partners that deal with billionaire clients and learned that most billionaires are anticipating additional increases in both wealth taxes and direct taxation.

In deploying their comparatively huge wealth, the report further said that some members of the über-rich had donated money towards combating the pandemic.

This most recent study also found that some 209 billionaires have publicly committed a total of $7.2 billion through financial donations, manufactured goods and equipment, and other commitments.

The researchers say the wealthy class will be integral to repairing damage caused by COVID-19, in its optimistic view.

The report added: “When the storm passes, a new generation of billionaire innovators looks set to play a critical role in repairing the damage.

Using the growing repertoire of emerging technologies, tomorrow’s innovators will digitise, refresh and revolutionise the economy.”

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