Despite the fact that the coronavirus has wreaked havoc on the US economy, billionaires in Washington and across the world are considerably wealthier than they were a year earlier, according to the Forbes World's Billionaires List, which was just published.
The number of billionaires on Forbes' 35th annual list has risen to an all-time high of 2,755, up 660 from the previous year. They're worth $13.1 trillion in total, up from $8 trillion in 2020.
86 percent of people on the list are now wealthier than they were a year before.
That, of course, includes Jeff Bezos of Amazon, whose fortune has risen from $113 billion in 2020 to an expected net worth of $177 billion in 2021. To put that in context, according to BigCommerce.com, the average Amazon Prime user spends $1,400 a year on Amazon, which means Bezos might have purchased as many as 45.7 million Amazon Prime users with the money he made last year. But there are many more super-rich people in this state.
Steve Ballmer is a former CEO of Microsoft who served as the company's CEO from 2000 to 2014.
After dropping out of Stanford's MBA program, he joined Microsoft as employee number 30 in 1980.
Ballmer was in charge of Microsoft after the first dot-com collapse, as well as attempts to catch up to Google in search and Apple in cell phones.
He purchased the NBA's Los Angeles Clippers for $2 billion the same year he left Microsoft.
Since 2014, he has increased his philanthropy, donating over $2 billion to a donor-advised fund focused on bringing Americans out of poverty.
He put $59 million into Social Solutions, a company that produces apps for charities and government departments, in 2018.
Fisher is the co-chief investment officer and executive chairman of Fisher Investments, which he established in 1979 with $250.
The company had $159 billion in assets at the end of 2020.
He is the author of 11 books, six of which have gone on to become national best sellers, and he now contributes to USA Today, the Financial Times, and other publications.
In the summer of 1964, a 13-year-old Fisher in San Mateo County, California, paid $1.20 an hour gathering fruit, sawing, and fertilizing.
Fisher dropped out of high school "to save time" and went to college to "take decent lessons."
In the 1980s, Howard Schultz took over Starbucks and transformed it from a small coffee shop into one of the world's most recognizable brands.
Starbucks grew from 11 outlets to over 30,000 globally under Schultz's leadership, and it became a social center for many Americans.
Schultz left his role as executive chairman and board director of the firm he founded in 1982 in 2018. He is currently Chairman Emeritus of the Board of Directors.
Schultz considered running for president in 2020, but decided against it in September 2019 because it would jeopardize Donald Trump's re-election.
The Schultz Family Foundation invests in veteran and youth preparation and jobs, with the aim of employing 1 million young people by 2021.
Schultz invests in other consumer companies through his venture capital company Maveron Capital, including Groupon, Madison Reed, Allbirds, and Lucy.
In 1975, Jim Jannard started the sunglasses company Oakley out of his car. His first invention was a motorcycle grip that wicked sweat away from the rider's face during long journeys.
It went public in 1995 and was acquired by Luxottica in 2007 for $2.1 billion in cash.
He was already working on his next project, Red Digital, which produced high-resolution cameras for films like "Avatar" and "The Hobbit."
In November 2018, he released the Red Hydrogen One, a holographic smartphone. It had flaws, but he claims that the second edition would be improved.
Let me know in the comments what you think of those people and who else you know from Washington that is a super-rich individual.