The 40 richest people on the planet added $19.4 billion to their collective net worth yesterday after an increase in U.S. jobs and positive earnings reports erased losses sustained earlier in the week.
The day’s biggest gainer was Spanish retail tycoon Amancio Ortega, who added $2.8 billion to his fortune as shares of Inditex SA (ITX), the world’s largest clothing retailer, jumped 5.4 percent. The 76-year-old, Europe’s richest man, is worth $45.1 billion, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index.
“Investor sentiment has turned a little bit more positive,” said Kristen Scarpa, a New York-based investment strategist at Barclays Wealth Management, in a telephone interview yesterday. “Job growth is the key to igniting additional consumption, which will drive the U.S economy forward.”
Global stocks slumped earlier in the week after European Central Bank President Mario Draghi failed to articulate the details of a bond-buying plan to ease the euro area crisis. The Federal Reserve Bank’s pledge to provide additional support for the economy further disappointed investors who were anticipating a more definitive sign of additional monetary easing.