By Chris King • 29 April 2022 • 20:19
As his company moves today, Friday, April 29, towards recording its worst on the stock markets for eight years, Jeff Bezos, the Amazon founder and chairman is believed to have lost around $20 billion (€18.9b) from his personal nett fortune.
At midday today, Amazon shares had dropped by an incredible 12.6 per cent. For the first time since 2015, Amazon yesterday, Thursday 28, posted a quarterly loss. Sales are also reported to have slowed to a 21-year first.
This slump in business means Bezos has lost a huge amount of money only on paper, with the billionaire holding an 11.1 per cent share in the company’s stock. Of course, should Amazon stock take a sudden upturn then Bezos will recoup some of his losses if the shares start going back up again.
Since the start of 2022, he could have lost as much as $40 billion (€37.8b), but still maintains his position behind Elon Musk as the world’s second-richest person. Bezos will not alone in posting losses, with the monthly US market reporting its worst performance since the pandemic began.
For the corresponding first-quarter of 2021, Amazon reported a massive profit of $8.1 billion (€7.66b), compared to Thursday’s loss of $3.84 billion (€3.63), stunning New York’s financial centre of Wall Street in the process.
After what was an unbelievable growth that occurred during the pandemic, online sales, according to US government data, have declined dramatically in February and March of this year. As a result, is it thought that Amazon is now struggling to handle its operational costs.
Amazon has doubled its workforce since 2020, and in a bid to attract staff, has been paying its workers higher wages. The company is also currently engaged in an ongoing dispute with unions in New York, something that is believed could subsequently see their costs rise even more.
Business analysts have suggested that Amazon maybe misread the massive financial benefits gained by the explosion during the pandemic and expanded too quickly. Billions were pumped into the construction of new warehouses in order to keep up with the demand at the time, without thinking the bubble might burst.
Supply-chain problems and the sharp increase in fuel costs will also affect Amazon’s business, hiking up costs, along with inflation. Consumers are seeing their disposable income slashed by these factors as well.
In a statement, Andy Jassy, the Amazon CEO, said, ‘The pandemic and subsequent war in Ukraine have brought unusual growth and challenges. Our teams are squarely focused on improving productivity and cost efficiencies throughout our fulfilment network. We know how to do this and have done it before’.
A five per cent surcharge has now been added to the fees paid by third-party sellers using Amazon’s fulfilment services, in an effort to offset inflation and rising fuel costs, as reported by dailymail.co.uk.
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Originally from Wales, Chris spent years on the Costa del Sol before moving to the Algarve where he is a web reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news.
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