What crisis? Number of Russian billionaires doubles

Paper money, extreme macro

Today, Forbes released its annual billionaire list, which reveals that Russian steel magnate Vladimir Lisin is now Russia’s richest man and, more surprisingly, the number of dollar billionaires in Russia has nearly doubled. Last year, there were 32 of them; this year, there are 62.

Russia was the G20 country worst hit by the crisis. How bad was was the hit? Well, GDP used to grow by around 8% year. Last year it shrunk by -8%. According to one Russian calculation, the cumulative shrinkage of Russia’s GDP was an unbelievable -53.1%. (Russia did even worse than Iceland, which came in second with -47.7%.)

But now commodity markets have stabilized a bit, slices of the $30-odd-billion Kremlin bailout have been passed around, and all is well: Moscow remains the city that is second only to New York in billionaire concentration.

via Forbes.com

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5 Responses to What crisis? Number of Russian billionaires doubles

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  3. Caitlin Kelly says:

    How do Russians feel about this? Is there any comment or reaction in the press about the growing (?) divide between such wealth and the average Russian? Are these guys admired…?

    • Frederick Bernas says:

      On this evidence, the already huge divide in wealth between these guys and the average Russian is definitely growing. I think on the streets, most people here think the only way to succeed in big business is if you are – or work with – such an oligarch. Whatever you do, don’t risk competing with them.

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