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The 10 Wealthiest Americans Got a Lot Richer During the Pandemic

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The 643 billionaires in the U.S. amassed $845 billion in collective wealth gains — a 29% increase — between mid-March, when the coronavirus pandemic paralyzed the American economy, and mid-September, according to a report by Americans for Tax Fairness and the Institute for Policy Studies.

The report, which was based on an analysis of billionaire figures from Forbes, showed that between March 18, the day Forbes published its annual billionaires report, and Sept. 15, American billionaires’ total net worth rose from $2.95 trillion to $3.8 trillion, a figure based on real-time data collected from the Forbes website.

Here’s another way to look at how those gains accrued:

  • $141 billion a month
  • $32 billion a week
  • $4.7 billion a day

During this same six-month period, millions of Americans lost their livelihoods and thousands their lives to the pandemic.

Between mid-March and mid-August, rank-and-file private sector employees’ collective work income — all hours worked times the hourly wages of the entire bottom 82% of the workforce — fell by 4.4%, the report said, citing Bureau of Labor Statistics data.

See the gallery for the 10 richest people in the U.S., ranked by the percentage growth of their wealth from mid-March to Mid-September.

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