The wealth of US billionaires has steadily grown over the last thirty-one years. But a third of $4.3 trillion in billionaire wealth gains since 1990 have come during the last 13 months of the pandemic.
Between 1990 and April 2021, the combined wealth of U.S. billionaires increased 19-fold, from $240 billion in today’s dollars to $4.56 trillion in 2021. Below are the findings about billionaire wealth growth over the past 31 years (according to an analysis by Americans for Tax Fairness and the Institute for Policy Studies: see data sources and full report.)
Between March 18, 2020, and April 12, 2021, the collective wealth of American billionaires leapt by $1.62 trillion, or 55 percent, from $2.95 trillion to $4.56 trillion. [See data table here].
America’s 719 billionaires now hold over four times more wealth ($4.56 trillion) than all the roughly 165 million Americans in society’s bottom half ($1.01 trillion), according to Federal Reserve Board data.
In 1990, the situation was reversed—billionaires were worth $240 billion and the bottom 50% had $380 billion in combined wealth.