Magazine article Multinational Monitor

The Rich Get Richer

Magazine article Multinational Monitor

The Rich Get Richer

Article excerpt

THE 1999 FORBES 400 -- the 400 richest people in the United States -- own as much wealth as the bottom half of the U.S. population put together -- over a trillion dollars.

The average Forbes 400 member's wealth grew 177 percent in the last 10 years and more than 55 percent in just the last two years. In contrast, the median U.S. household lost $4,700, or 8.6 percent of its net worth between 1989 and 1997.

Most new members of the Forbes 400 list released in September are tied to computer-related businesses. Nineteen of the newest names made their fortunes off internet-related businesses.

Apart from Bill Gates, who retains his position as the richest person in the United States (and the world), 11 other Microsoft names appear on the list, including the second richest (co-founder Paul Allen, whose worth is estimated at $40 billion) and number four, company president Steve Ballmer ($23 billion). …

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