- Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos’s net worth grew by $72.7 billion in 2020, increasing by 63.3% over the course of the year.
- Bezos’s net wealth climbed as Amazon shares skyrocketed during the pandemic.
- The billionaire has been criticized for failing to adequately reward Amazon’s frontline workers, with more than 4,000 Amazon warehouse workers relying on food stamps.
In 2020, the rich got richer.
That includes the wealthiest man in the world, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos. As of Monday, Bezos’s net worth had grown by $72.7 billion, up 63.3% over the course of the year, according to Bloomberg’s Billionaire Index.
Here is a chart that puts Bezos’s billions in perspective. As a reminder — Bezos began the year as the richest man in the world. The $72.7 billion dollars he gained this year is on top of the $116 billion he was worth at the end of 2019.
Business Insider took note of Bezos’s net worth, as estimated by Bloomberg, on the 1st and 15th of every month through December 1. This helped avoid exaggerating brief peaks and tumbles in Bezos’s net worth, as he and other billionaires regularly gain or lose billions of dollars in a single day.
Bloomberg provides some helpful comparisons for Bezos’s net worth, which is 2.7 million times the median U.S. household income. For example, his wealth is equal to almost 8% of all home sales in the US. His gains this year alone are greater than the annual GDP of Costa Rica or Lithuania.
Bezos’s net wealth climbed through 2020 as Amazon shares skyrocketed, due to the rise in online shopping. Business Insider’s Eugene Kim reports that Bezos is back in the trenches during the pandemic, taking a more hands-on approach as COVID-19 disrupts business.
Critics have slammed Bezos for failing to adequately reward Amazon’s frontline workers during the pandemic. Bloomberg recently reported that more than 4,000 of the company’s warehouse workers are on food stamps, even as Bezos’s net worth grew by billions. (Amazon has called Bloomberg’s conclusions “false,” noting that the company pays all workers $15 minimum wage.)
“Warehouse workers have gone on strike and sued the company during the pandemic, alleging Amazon did not protect them enough from COVID-19,” Allana Akhtar reports. “Amazon said more than 19,000 workers tested positive for COVID-19 between March 1 and September 19.”