- Elon Musk's one tweet cost him $15 billion
After Tesla Inc.’s shares slid 8.6 percent on Monday, Elon Musk is no longer the world’s richest person, wiping $15.2 billion from his net worth.
Tesla’s biggest decline since September was fueled in part by Musk’s weekend comments that Bitcoin prices and smaller rival Ether “do seem high.” His message came two weeks after Tesla announced it had added $1.5 billion in Bitcoin to its balance sheet via its favored Twitter medium. On Tuesday, the cryptocurrency, which has surged more than 400 percent over the last year, tumbled for a second day, slipping below $50,000 at one point on skepticism about the durability of its rally.
Earlier Monday, Musk also tweeted that the company’s Model Y Standard Range SUV will still be available “off the menu,” backing up rumors from Electrek’s electric vehicle news site that the model had been withdrawn from its online configurator.
On the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, Musk slips to second among the world’s 500 richest people with a net worth of $183.4 billion—down from a January high of $210 billion. Even as his fortune fell by $3.7 billion to $186.3 billion on Monday, Amazon.com Inc. founder Jeff Bezos regained the top spot.
Since January, the two billionaires have been switching places as Tesla’s value fluctuated. Before wiping off almost all of this year’s rise, the stock soared as much as 25 percent to begin 2021. After his SpaceX rocket company raised $850 million earlier this month, Musk overtook Bezos briefly, valuing the company at $74 billion, a 60 percent leap from August.
Bezos took the top spot in the ranking for three consecutive years prior to January, when Musk eclipsed the giant of e-commerce thanks to a Tesla share rally of 794 percent.
Monday’s market selloff affected many of the ultra-rich in the world. The second-biggest drop on the Bloomberg index was Zhong Shanshan, Asia’s richest man, falling by $5.1 billion as his bottled-water business dropped 4.5 percent. Colin Huang of Pinduoduo Inc., Reliance Industries Ltd.’s Mukesh Ambani, and Tencent Holdings Ltd.’s Pony Ma all lost more than $2.5 billion each.