Billionaire Elon Musk has earned an unfortunate world record after suffering through an unprecedented wealth wipeout in recent months.
Musk, who once ranked as the world’s richest person, shattered the mark for “the largest loss of personal fortune in history,” the experts at Guinness World Records said in a release last week.
After reaching a peak of $340 billion in November 2021, Musk’s fortune plummeted by more than $210 billion to an estimated $130 billion as of Tuesday, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires’ Index. Forbes placed Musk’s losses slightly lower at about $182 billion.
By either measure, Musk’s losses broke the previous world record held by Japanese tech investor and SoftBank founder Masayoshi Son, who lost $58.6 billion off his fortune as the dot-com bubble burst in 2000.
The shocking downturn cost Musk his long-held title as the world’s richest individual. He currently ranks second on Bloomberg’s list, trailing LVMH founder Bernard Arnault, who is worth an estimated $179 billion.
The bulk of Musk’s wealth is tied up in shares of Tesla, which is in the midst of a major slump.
The automaker’s shares plunged by a whopping 65% last year as Tesla contended with supply chain issues, dwindling demand in the key China market and the fallout from Musk’s controversial takeover at Twitter.
The slump has continued into the new year after Tesla’s latest vehicle delivery tallies fell short of Wall Street’s expectations.
Critics say Musk exacerbated the investor confidence crisis facing Tesla by selling off large tranches of stock to fund his $44 billion Twitter acquisition. Meanwhile, Twitter’s revenue has reportedly plummeted as advertisers fled the platform in the wake of Musk’s deal.
Musk has faced significant scrutiny over his actions at Twitter, which have included hundreds of job cuts, clashes with advertisers and an overhaul of the company’s account verification policies.
Musk referenced the Tesla share slump in a recent memo, telling employees to ignore “stock market craziness” and focus on their work.