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Billionaire Jeff Bezos Lost $20.5 Billion in 24 Hours

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Jeff Bezos is $20.5 billion poorer. 

The second richest man in the world lost this huge sum in 24 hours. To be more precise, this big loss happened during the April 29 stock market session. 

Do not worry, however, because the entrepreneur still has a net worth of $148 billion as of April 30, according to Bloomberg Billionaire Index. Bezos is now over $100 billion from Elon Musk, the world’s richest man. 

His place as silver medalist is now threatened by the French businessman Bernard Arnault, the CEO of the luxury group LVMH — Louis Vuitton, Tiffany, Hennessy etc —. Arnault’s fortune is estimated at $136 billion. Bill Gates comes in fourth place with a fortune of $125 billion.

With the exception of Arnault, all the members of the Top 10 of this ranking of the biggest fortunes of the planet lost money on April 29, which was a black day on Wall Street. It must be said that six of the ten richest people in the world are in tech. Apart from Arnault, the other non-techs are Warren Buffett ($117 billion), Indian billionaires Gautam Adani ($122 billion) et Mukesh Ambani ($103 billion).

Jeff Bezos’ net wealth is primarily tied to his 9.81% stake in Amazon as of March 2, according to FactSet.

Amazon said on April 28 that it recorded a loss of $3.8 billion during the past quarter, or $7.56 per share, compared with a profit of $8.1 billion a year ago, or a profit of $15.79 per share. 

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Revenues rose 7% from last year to $116.4 billion, the slowest year-on-year growth in more than a decade.

Amazon said it sees operating income of between -$1 billion to +$3 billion on revenues in the range of $116 billion to $121 billion, compared to the Refinitiv forecast of around $125 billion, for the current quarter.

“The pandemic and subsequent war in Ukraine have brought unusual growth and challenges,” said CEO Andy Jassy. “Today, as we’re no longer chasing physical or staffing capacity, our teams are squarely focused on improving productivity and cost efficiencies throughout our fulfillment network. We know how to do this and have done it before.”

“This may take some time, particularly as we work through ongoing inflationary and supply chain pressures, but we see encouraging progress on a number of customer experience dimensions, including delivery speed performance as we’re now approaching levels not seen since the months immediately preceding the pandemic in early 2020,” he added.

The numbers and the comments caught investors off guard as they believed Amazon could weather the end of the pandemic economy which had seen consumers turn to online shopping. 

But the reopening of the economy seems not to spare Amazon’s core retail business. At the same time the operating expenses of the e-commerce giant continue to increase. Amazon has in particular had to hire people in its warehouses and must now face soaring logistics and labor costs.

“While sales were short of expectations by a mere $6 million, the bigger headline was the company’s first quarterly loss since 2015, at a loss per share of $7.56, or nearly $16.00 shy of the Street’s earnings per share expectations,” William Blair analysts wrote in a note to their clients.

Amazon shares fell 14.05% to $2,485.63, their worst day since July 2006, on April 29. Around $206 billion in market cap went up in smoke in 24 hours. Its market cap, however, remains at $1.26 trillion.

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