Who Was the World's First Billionaire?

Who Was the World's First Billionaire?

Who Was the World's First Billionaire?

Slate notes that John D. Rockefeller was the world's first billionaire. He achieved this status in the early 1900s as a result of his investment in the Standard Oil Company. PBS notes that Rockefeller achieved the pinnacle of his financial success in 1912 when he earned a reported $900 million.

Despite the large amount of wealth Rockefeller accumulated over his lifetime, PBS notes that at the time of his death, Rockefeller's estate was worth only $26,410,837. He had given away the bulk of his estate to his heirs and philanthropic organizations, such as the Rockefeller Foundation, which he established in 1913 and to which he had given a reported $23 million by 1929.