Zuckerberg's fortune passes Kochs
SAN FRANCSICO: Mark Zuckerberg became the sixthrichest person on Earth today. The Facebook Inc. founder saw his fortune rise $6 billion in trading Thursday after the world's biggest social network delivered another quarter of record revenue. That gives the 31-year-old a net worth of $47.5 billion, enough to surpass the $45.9 billion holdings of brothers Charles and David Koch, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index.
Facebook reported on Wednesday that fourth-quarter sales were up 52 percent to $5.84 billion and net income had more than doubled to $1.56 billion from a year earlier. More than 1.59 billion users are now logging on every month, according to the company. Thursday's surge turned a year-to-date decline of more than $4 billion for Zuckerberg into a $1.7 billion gain for the year and pushed him above the Kochs, whose industrial holdings have been hit by lower oil prices.
The five billionaires that remain above the tech entrepreneur in the ranking -- Bill Gates, Amancio Ortega, Warren Buffett, Jeff Bezos and Carlos Slim-- have lost a combined $19 billion so far this month as global equities slump amid dimming investor expectations of global growth. Bezos, last year's top-performing billionaire, was down $3.9 billion at the close of trading Thursday, and slipped as much as $8 billion more in extended trading after Amazon.com Inc. reported fourth-quarter earnings that missed estimates. Zuckerberg is now one of only seven billionaires among the 100 richest people on Earth to see an increase this year, according to the Bloomberg index, a daily ranking of the world's 400 richest people.