Like most of us the rich too are facing a financial crisis. Of the 1,125 billionaires who made last year’s ranking there are only 793 on Forbes’ list of billionaires which is a 30% decline. 355 faced huge losses and 18 died. It is the first time since 2003 that the world has had a net loss in the number of billionaires.
As contrary to the assumption that the rich will not be affected some of them have been badly hit by the recession and have become a lot poorer. Their collective net worth is $2.4 trillion, down $2 trillion from a year ago. Their average net worth fell 23% to $3 billion. Bill Gates lost $18 billion but he maintained his rank of the world’s richest man.Warren Buffett, last year’s No. 1, saw his fortune decline $25 billion as shares of Berkshire Hathaway fell nearly 50% in 12 months, but he still managed to slip just one spot to No. 2. Mexican telecom titan Carlos Slim Helu also lost $25 billion and dropped one spot to No. 3.
Sadly the biggest loser in the world this year, by dollars, was last year’s biggest gainer. India’s Anil Ambani lost $32 billion–76% of his fortune–as shares of his Reliance Communications, Reliance Power and Reliance Capital all collapsed. So even if we all want to avoid it but the fact that the markets are going down cannot be shunned.