WARREN BUFFETT IS THE BIGGEST BILLIONAIRE GAINER SINCE THE US ELECTION
Warren Buffett is the billionaire who has benefited most from the market rally following Trump’s election and was one of Clinton’s most outspoken billionaire supporters.
Berkshire Hathaway CEO Warren Buffett’s net worth has increased by $9.5 billion since Donald Trump was elected, the largest dollar increase of any billionaire during that time period. Warren Buffett is now the second richest person in the world.
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In August 2016, the Oracle of Omaha stumped for Clinton at a campaign rally in his hometown, challenging Trump to release his tax returns. Later in the speech, Buffett also added, “Unlike what Mr. Trump says, America is great.” Buffett also promised to help at least 100 voters in Omaha get to the polls in the speech. He followed through on that promise, renting a local shuttle, “Ollie the Trolley,” and posing for photos with voters on Election Day.
Warren Buffett didn’t endorse Clinton out of fear of how Berkshire Hathaway would fare under Trump. “I will predict that if either Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton become president, Berkshire will do fine,” Buffett told his shareholders at Berkshire Hathaway’s annual meeting in May 2016.
While the election results were not what Buffett was hoping for, he reiterated his earlier point in an interview with CNBC after Trump’s win, saying, “America works…It’ll work fine under Donald Trump.” He later said in an interview with Charlie Rose that Berkshire Hathaway invested $12 billion into equities since Trump was elected.
Buffett’s optimism was warranted: Berkshire Hathaway shares are worth 12% more today than they were on Election Day, adding $9.5 billion to Buffett’s net worth. Buffett was the biggest billionaire gainer in the first few days after the election and he’s maintained that lead ever since.
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Analysts attribute the rise in Berkshire Hathaway’s stock since the election to Trump’s promises of deregulation and tax reform. A Barclays report in December estimated that Berkshire Hathaway could boost its book value by 11% if corporate taxes are reduced, as Trump promised. Morgan Stanley analyst Kai Pan wrote in a recent report that Berkshire Hathaway would be a “major beneficiary” of tax reform.
Warren Buffett is not the only billionaire to see a bump in his net worth since the election. The next biggest post-election gainer is Oracle chairman Larry Ellison, who has added $6.8 billion to his net worth as Oracle stock climbed 13% since the election. Ellison now has a net worth of $52.2 billion.
The third biggest gainer is Mexican telecom billionaire Carlos Slim Helu. Slim was initially the biggest billionaire loser after the election: his net worth dropped $6.5 billion in the week following Trump’s victory as the strength of the peso plunged against the dollar. Now, however, Slim is $6.1 billion richer than he was on Election Day and has a fortune Forbes estimates at $59.9 billion. America Movil stock is up 15% since the election and the Peso has since strengthened against the dollar.
Overall, the stock market’s performance since Trump’s victory has lifted the fortunes of the world’s billionaires by 7% to $7.8 trillion. The President’s net worth, however, has dropped by $200 million to $3.5 billion.
Source: Forbes Magazine