Fact Check: This Math Dividing Jeff Bezos' Net Worth Among The World Population Does NOT Compute

Fact Check

  • by: Sarah Thompson
Fact Check: This Math Dividing Jeff Bezos' Net Worth Among The World Population Does NOT Compute Math Fail

Could Jeff Bezos single-handedly end world poverty by taking his $121 billion fortune and giving every person on Earth $1 billion? No, that's not true: This proposed solution to poverty is sadly not backed up by this faulty mathematical reasoning.

The proposal originated as a tweet (archived here) where it was published by Plalism on November 3, 2020. It opened:

Jeff Bezos has 121 Billion dollars.
The Population of earth is 7 billion people.
He could give every person 1 BILLION dollars and end poverty, and he would still have 114 billion dollars left over but he won't do it.

This is what the post looked like on Twitter at the time of writing:

Twitter screenshot

(Source: Twitter screenshot taken on Wed Dec 2 14:58:16 2020 UTC)

Using the numbers provided in the silly scenario, the equation does not calculate. Alternate results can be calculated if using only some of the figures.

If Bezos had $114 billion left over from the original $121 billion, only $7 billion would have been used. If each person who was given money was given $1 billion, only seven people could receive $1 billion.

If Bezos had $114 billion left over from the original $121 billion, only $7 billion would have been used -- if that was divided equally, 7 billion people would each get $1.00.

If the original $121 billion was divided between 7 billion people, each person would get $17.28 and Jeff Bezos would have presumably, $17.28.

The actual net worth of Jeff Bezos, founder of Amazon, spiked at about $207 billion in September of 2020 according to the Bloomberg.com Billionaires Index. This number has declined and now stands at $188 billion. The world population, according to Worldometers.info is currently 7,829,392,940. Dividing the current estimated net worth of Jeff Bezos by the current estimated world population would give $24.01 to each person.

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  Sarah Thompson

Sarah Thompson lives with her family and pets on a small farm in Southeastern Indiana. She founded a Facebook page and a blog called “Exploiting the Niche” in 2017 to help others learn about manipulative tactics and avoid scams on social media. Since then she has collaborated with journalists in the USA, Canada and Australia and since December 2019 she works as a Social Media Authenticity Analyst at Lead Stories.


 

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