Asia, the fastest growing mega-wealth generator saw a bump in 2018. Out of the 128 Asians that are listed on the 500-member Bloomberg Billionaire Index collectively lost $317 billion this year. This is the first time since the ranking started in 2012 that the region's wealth has fallen.
Trade tensions and concerns over lower stock valuations have hurt the fortunes of some of Asia's biggest names. China's tech sector was particularly hard hurt. Indian and South Korean billionaires were also affected.
Over two-thirds of the 40 Chinese billionaires listed on the index lost their wealth. Wanda Group's Wang Jianlin lost $10.8 billion, the highest in Asia, amid the sale of assets by his property conglomerate to cut debts. Richard Liu, the founder of JD.com, who was arrested for less than 24 hours in the US in August on suspicion of rape before being released, lost the most in terms of percentage. He lost $4.8 billion, that is, almost half his wealth. Charges have not been filed against Liu and he has denied the allegation.
In India, 23 of its richest people lost $21 billion, with Lakshmi Mittal losing the most at $5.6 billion, or 29 percent of his net worth. He was followed by the founder of Sun Pharmaceutical Industries, Dilip Shanghvi, whose wealth declined $4.6 billion.