Bill Gates now worth $50 billion, more or less

Summary:The richest American just got richer Friday, surpassing the $50 billion mark.A surge in Microsoft Corp.

The richest American just got richer Friday, surpassing the $50 billion mark.

A surge in Microsoft Corp.'s share price pushed Bill Gates' net worth to $50.37 billion, based on the number of shares in his possession as of the company's 1997 annual report. Microsoft closed at $93, up $1.68.




Bill Gates could personally erase the federal deficit.




That makes the Microsoft (MSFT) chairman worth more than all the gold in Fort Knox and all but about 42 countries, according to the Bill Gates Net Worth Page.

Also, it may make you wonder why Gates is fretting over the U.S. Department of Justice's investigation into his company. According to the Net Worth Page, he could now personally afford to pay the $1 million-a-day fine requested by the DOJ for 137 years. That assumes, of course, that Microsoft shares remain at their current level and that the DOJ wins its sought-after penalty. (The numbers also don't take taxes into account.)



What is there to say about someone who is worth $50 billion? Add your comments to the bottom of this story.





Or he could just buy pro sports teams. All of them. According to the Net Worth page, Gates could afford to buy every major league baseball, football, basketball and hockey team in the U.S. and Canada -- and still have plenty of change to spare.

Gates could afford to buy every major league baseball, football, basketball, and hockey team.

The page, which updates automatically based on Microsoft's share price, also points out that Gates could afford to give $8.52 to everyone in the world. Or, if he wanted to keep the money at home, he could give $186.93 to every American. Or he could restrict his giving to Microsoft employees. In that case, each one would get about $2.26 million.

And if he wanted to spend all his money himself by the year 2010? He'd have to spend $12.54 million a day.

Topics: Microsoft

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