Jeff and MacKenzie Bezos’s split has created a puzzle for index investors: Who gets their stock in Amazon.com Inc.?
Regulatory filings show Jeff Bezos owns almost 79 million shares of the company, worth about $130 billion as of yesterday.
If MacKenzie takes a chunk in a settlement — or either party needs to liquidate their assets to meet divorce expenses — those could become part of the company’s freely traded stock.
In turn, that could boost the company’s weighting in indexes including the S&P 500 — sending tracker funds on a small Amazon shopping spree.
“From the perspective of the index, you’d need to a sell a little of everything else and buy some Amazon,” said David Dziekanski, a portfolio manager at Toroso Investments. “The equity markets will absorb any Amazon additional shares without much impact on price.”
It’s a speculative yet pertinent question, given that about $3.4 trillion is pegged to the S&P 500, and another $6.5 trillion uses the gauge as a benchmark.
That’s put the wonky methodology governing indexes like the S&P 500 center stage.