Elon Musk Was The Richest Person In The World Very Briefly – Closed $20 Billion Gap In Four Days

By on January 6, 2021 in ArticlesBillionaire News

Elon Musk started this week with a net worth of $170 billion. At that point he was $20 billion shy of Jeff Bezos' $190 billion net worth. For a very brief moment this morning when trading opened, Elon was the richest person in the world. As of this writing (Thursday morning at 7am PST), Elon's $184 billion net worth puts him $1 billion shy from being the richest person in the world. Technically $1 billion plus $1.

Here's how the Musk and Bezos fortunes stacked up after Wednesday's market close:

Elon Musk's net worth = $181 billion

Jeff Bezos' net worth = $184 billion

Here's how the stack up in real time right now:

Elon Musk's net worth = $184 billion

Jeff Bezos' net worth = $185 billion

How We Got Here

Elon started 2020 with a net worth of $28 billion. He ended 2020 with a net worth of $175 billion.

As we reported previously, Elon was $20 billion away from Jeff Bezos on Monday. On Monday trading, Tesla shares ended up 3% and Amazon ended down 2%. These movements cut the gap to $11 billion – $175 billion (Musk) vs. $186 billion (Bezos). On Tuesday, both stocks ended up very slightly, so the gap was unchanged.

Tesla started the week at $730 per share. Tesla closed at $755 on Wednesday. Amazon started the week at $3,186. Amazon closed at $3,183 on Wednesday.

If Jeff Bezos' fortune continues to stay in the $184-186 range, we estimate that Elon needs Tesla to top $795 per share for him to take the crown. Tesla shares are currently trading at $790.

However – at today's open when Amazon very briefly dipped to $3,155 while Tesla was popping to $794. At that point, Elon was technically the richest person in the world. Amazon bounced back and is currently up 1.7% to $3,190.

(Photo by Maja Hitij/Getty Images)

Before that brief moment today, Jeff Bezos was the richest person in the world without interruption since October 2017. Jeff topped the list for the first time in July 2017, overtaking Bill Gates. Gates and Bezos traded back and forth for roughly four months, then Bezos took off without competition until today.

Elon is the fifth person in the last 25 years to hold the top spot at least temporarily. The other four are Jeff Bezos, Bill Gates, Carlos Slim and Warren Buffett.

Below is a year-by-year breakdown of the person who held the title of richest person in the world for the majority of each year going back to 1995.

1995Bill Gates$12.9 billion
1996Bill Gates$18 billion
1997Bill Gates$36.4 billion
1998Bill Gates$51 billion
1999Bill Gates$90 billion
2000Bill Gates$60 billion
2001Bill Gates$58.7 billion
2002Bill Gates$52.8 billion
2003Bill Gates$47 billion
2004Bill Gates$46.6 billion
2005Bill Gates$50 billion
2006Bill Gates$52 billion
2007Bill Gates$56 billion
2008Warren Buffett$62 billion
2009Bill Gates$40 billion
2010Carlos Slim Helu$53.4 billion
2011Carlos Slim Helu$74 billion
2012Carlos Slim Helu$69 billion
2013Carlos Slim Helu$73 billion
2014Bill Gates$76 billion
2015Bill Gates$79.2 billion
2016Bill Gates$75 billion
2017Bill Gates$86 billion
2018Jeff Bezos$112 billion
2019Jeff Bezos$170 billion
2020Jeff Bezos$190 billion
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