Thursday, December 2, 2021

Musk and Bezos are now worth nearly half a trillion dollars.

Elon Musk and Jeff Bezos’ combined net worth approached $ 500 billion on Wednesday, fueled by an inexorable rally in Tesla Inc. and a wide spike in tech stocks that set the Nasdaq 100 on an intraday record.

The two fortunes are worth more than the market value of Johnson & Johnson and roughly equal to the value of America’s largest bank, JPMorgan Chase & Co. – is another tipping point in what is becoming a historic week for billionaires. …

Senate Finance Chairman Ron Wieden’s groundbreaking proposal to tax billionaires on unrealized profits was detailed Wednesday morning, but was rejected in negotiations hours later. Wyden insists the billionaires’ tax plan is alive, but talks have instead moved on to a possible 3% surcharge – on top of the highest income tax rate – for those earning more than $ 10 million.

While such a plan would attract more taxpayers than taxes billionaires and help pay for a democratic social spending plan that could approach $ 2 trillion, it would require a much smaller slice from the richest Americans like Musk and Bezos. …

According to the billionaire tax proposal, Musk and Bezos would collectively receive a $ 100 billion one-time tax bill payable over five years if the proposal were approved, according to the Bloomberg Billionaire Index. The plan clearly targets the highly valued government-owned shareholdings that have been a major driver of billionaire wealth growth in recent years.

Musk, the co-founder of publicly traded Tesla and closed rocket company SpaceX, added $ 122.3 billion to his fortune this year, bringing his net worth to $ 292 billion, according to the Bloomberg Index. The fortune of the founder of Amazon.com Inc. Bezos is $ 196.3 billion.

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According to the index, the 10 richest Americans, including Bill Gates and Mark Zuckerberg, are worth $ 1.4 trillion.

Musk rejected Wyden’s plan, arguing that taxing billionaires would only deal a “small blow” to the payment of US government debt.

“The real issue is spending,” Musk said in a tweet that also linked to an online watch that estimates a country’s debt. According to the Tesla CEO, even if the super-rich are taxed at “100%,” the government will have to reach out to the “general public” to cover the deficit.

“This is basic mathematics,” he said.

Musk’s wealth has skyrocketed in part because he hasn’t sold his Tesla shares for years, instead turning to banks for loans, using his stake in the electric car maker as collateral. Pledging shares is a way to monetize capital without selling it.

According to regulatory filings from December 2020, the most recent available with this information, Musk has $ 515 million in personal loans from Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and Bank of America Corp. Musk also said that some of his shares in SpaceX are pledged, but did not disclose how many.

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