Walmart's surge just added $12 billion to the Walton family's wealth

  • The Walton family still controls about 48% of Walmart, meaning their exorbitant wealth is innately tied to the company’s stock price.
  • Walmart’s earnings surge on Tuesday netted Sam Walton’s heirs a cool $US11.6 billion.
  • Follow Walmart stock price in real-time here.

Walmart skyrocketed more than 10% Thursday following the grocer’s earnings report that crushed analysts expectations, adding a cool $US11.6 billion to the founding family’s wealth.

The richest family in the United States – which owns about 48% of the US’ largest grocery chain through Walton Enterprises – saw their net worth surge to $US163.2 billion, Bloomberg first reported.

On an individual basis, Jim Rob and Alice Walton – the heirs of Walmart’s co-founder Sam Walton – are worth between $US42.1 billion and $US43.8 billion, according to Bloomberg’s Billionaires Index. Lukas, Sam Walton’s grandson, is worth $US15.3 billion. Two other family members, Christy Walton and Nancy Walton Laurie, are worth $US6.89 billion and $US4.66 billion, respectively.

Unsurprisingly, much of the family’s wealth is tied up in Walmart, which has had a volatile start to the year. Tuesday’s gains, fuelled by growth in both traditional groceries as well as e-commerce, bring the stock back near its January highs of $US109. While none of the heirs are actively involved in Walmart’s day to day operations, they retain an outsized-presence on the company’s board.

Shares of Walmart are up about 1% since the beginning of the year.

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