The World’s Richest People Got $237 Billion Richer This Year

From Brad Hoppmann: When you think about what the biggest trend in 2016 was, you can’t help but conclude that it was the prevalence of populism on the political stage.

That populism was concretized in June with the UK’s Brexit vote. Four months later, we had the biggest populist surprise of all … the U.S. election outcome.

This year’s biggest headlines may have belonged to voters opting for a change in the status quo. But that didn’t stop the super-rich from getting super-richer in 2016.

According to a recent Bloomberg article, the world’s wealthiest individuals are ending 2016 with about $237 billion more than they had at the beginning of the year.

So much for the rise of the populist “little guy” around the globe.

Of course, just because the super-rich enhanced their collective wealth this year doesn’t mean it came at the expense of others. Far from it.

Wealth-creation is not a zero-sum game, where the rich take money from the poor.

Rather, rich investors and rich businessmen such as Warren Buffett, Bill Gates, Harold Hamm, Jeff Bezos and Bernard Arnault do things that help us all get richer, and that make all our lives collectively better.

They also provide us with good examples of how to achieve success.

Image credit: Bloomberg

According to Bloomberg:

The biggest fortunes on the planet whipsawed through $4.8 trillion of daily net worth gains and losses during the year, rising 5.7 percent to $4.4 trillion by the close of trading Dec. 27, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index.

That’s a lot of volatility. And it shows us how no one is immune to the kind of big price swings in markets that we saw in 2016.

To give you a sense of just how far the pendulum swung for the super-rich, take a look at this chart from the Bloomberg piece.

Image credit: Bloomberg

As you can see, things were far from smooth sailing during the year.

I think many of us can relate to the difficult start to the year in our own portfolios, as well as the nice rebound in stocks we saw from February to June.

Things returned to a state of bullishness after the late-June Brexit vote. But then leading up to Election Day, things got dicey again.

Then the biggest political shocker of the century took place. And much to the surprise of most pundits, the Trump win sent stocks soaring.

That move in markets also lifted the Bloomberg Billionaires Index back to where it was before the pre-election sell-off.

To me, this volatile ride — and ultimately the big gains — in the Billionaires Index clearly demonstrates one thing. No matter how successful you are, you are not immune to market forces.

In fact, the more intimately your money is linked to markets (as is the case with Warren Buffett), the more you’ll suffer through the rollercoaster that is markets.

However, like Buffett — if you have a sound strategy and good game plan in place to execute on that strategy — you can make big money in the equity markets, commodities markets and even bond markets.

In 2017, our promise is to make sure you have the information, research and actionable ideas you need to help you make the best investment decisions you can.

So, whether it’s a year of populist uprising … or a year of elite hyper-drive economic growth … we will be there to help you make sense of it all …

And we’ll be there to help you make money through it all, as well.

The SPDR S&P 500 ETF Trust (NYSE:SPY) rose $0.54 (+0.24%) in premarket trading Friday. Year-to-date, the largest ETF tied to the S&P 500 has gained 11.19%.

SPY currently has an ETF Daily News SMART Grade of A (Strong Buy), and is ranked #1 of 108 ETFs in the Large Cap Blend ETFs category.

This article is brought to you courtesy of Uncommon Wisdom Daily.

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