Wednesday, September 2, 2020

Former Mrs. Bezos now richest woman in the world as Wall Street highs lead to reshuffling of top billionaires

A pandemic-fueled tech stock surge has reshaped the fortunes of the three-comma club.

MacKenzie Scott, who recently divorced Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, is now the wealthiest woman in the world.Danny Moloshok / Reuters file

By Ben Popken

A pandemic-fueled tech stock surge has led to a reshuffling at the top of the U.S. billionaires list.

MacKenzie Scott, a novelist and philanthropist who recently divorced Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, is now the wealthiest woman in the world. Last week, Tesla CEO Elon Musk overtook Facebook CEO and co-founder Mark Zuckerberg to become the third-richest man in the world, after Jeff Bezos and Bill Gates.

Since pandemic lockdowns started in March, the combined U.S. billionaire wealth has grown by nearly $800 billion, or over 25 percent, according to an analysis by Americans for Tax Fairness, an advocacy group.

As part of her divorce, Scott got a 4 percent stake in Amazon, whose stock has been on a tear as coronavirus-induced lockdowns propel online sales and home deliveries. Shares have risen from nearly $2,000 to $3,500 since the start of the year.  Read more >>