Billionaire wealth smashes $10 trillion record during pandemic, reports UBS

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Nancy Heslin   Forbes Monaco

Jeff Bezos


Jeff Bezos is now worth $74 billion. Photo: Steve Jurvetson

A report released this morning by UBS and PwC reveals that billionaire wealth broke the $10 trillion mark during the Covid pandemic.

The finding from “Riding The Storm: Market Turbulence Accelerates Diverging Fortunes,” which covers 2,000 billionaires in 43 markets, accounting for 98% of billionaire wealth, indicate that total billionaire wealth reached $10.2 trillion in July, up from $8.9 trillion at the end of 2017, while the number of billionaires climbed to 2,189 from 2,158 over the same period.


“It’s a time of accelerating change, reflected in the polarizing fortunes of billionaires,” says UBS. Every industry covered by the study saw billionaires’ wealth rise by double digits. During 2018, 2019 and the first seven months of 2020, total wealth of tech billionaires rose by 42.5% to $1.8 trillion (the world’s richest person, Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, saw his wealth soar to $74 billion so far this year.), while for healthcare billionaires there was an increase of 50.3% to $658.6 billion.


The U.S. is the country with the most wealth ($3.6 trillion) but Asia Pacific has more billionaires (831) than any other region and representing 38% of the global billionaire population.

The study also showed that around 200 of those billionaires publicly committed $7.2 billion to help combat Covid, adding that their donations to the tackle the pandemic were likely to be higher.


As Agnès Falco, CEO of UBS Monaco, tells Forbes Monaco in the September/October edition (see article “Trimming Your Waste Line” currently in kiosks), “We know there is in excess of $300 trillion in private wealth which vastly overshadows the amount in global stock exchanges and philanthropic foundations combined—under $70 trillion.”


“We are constantly reminded of the serious issues the world faces, from hunger to climate change, and the cost of addressing them. The United Nations claims we need to spend between €2 trillion to $7 trillion per year to achieve their Sustainable Development Goals by 2030.”

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Nancy Heslin   Forbes Monaco

Nancy Heslin is an established journalist and lifestyle writer. She has been the Editor-in-Chief of Forbes Monaco magazine (bimonthly in English) , since the magazine's 2nd issue . Launched in November 2018, Forbes Monaco is part of the Forbes family, with its 7 million readers and 71 million monthly website visitors worldwide.