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While world economies struggle, American billionaires get 10% richer during coronavirus pandemic

WION logo WION 23-04-2020 wionnewsweb@gmail.com (Wion Web Team)
Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos are posing for a picture © Provided by WION

While the world economies are struggling and world bodies like the International Monetary Fund and World Bank are issuing warnings of great recession every other day, the wealth of America's billionaires continues to be on the rise.

According to the latest report by the Institue of Policy Studies, the combined wealth of America's billionaires, including Amazon.com Inc founder Jeff Bezos and Tesla Inc chief Elon Musk, increased nearly 10% during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

As per the report, during the period between January 1 to April 10 this year, 34 of the nation's wealthiest billionaires have seen their net worth increase by tens of millions of dollars.

Since the coronavirus pandemic began in December, over a billion people are confined in their homes due to the lockdown and self-distancing rules.

During the lockdown, tech companies like Zoom have seen a surge in their userbase thus boosting the net worth of billionaire founders with holdings in those companies.

According to the IPS report, eight of these billionaires including Bezos, Zoom Video Communications Inc founder Eric Yuan and Musk saw a $1-billion jump in their total net worth.

Musk holds an 18.5% stake in Tesla shares, which has soared over 73% since the beginning of the year as traders looked beyond the short-term impact of the coronavirus pandemic.

Bezos owns about 15.1% in Amazon stock, which has gained nearly 31% this year as online orders on its platform have surged due to people staying indoors.

Meanwhile, IMF on Tuesday said that the coronavirus pandemic is pushing the global economy into its deepest recession in a century, cutting world output by three per cent this year, and the crisis could get worse.

The downturn will slash $9 trillion from the world economy, IMF chief economist Gita Gopinath told reporters as she presented the latest forecasts in the World Economic Outlook.

If the virus is contained and economies can begin operating again, 2021 should see a rebound of 5.8 per cent, according to the IMF.

(With inputs from agencies)

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