Warren Buffett’s fortune surged past $100 billion this week. He would be the world’s wealthiest person if he didn’t give to charity.

Warren buffett
Warren Buffett. REUTERS/Rebecca Cook

  • Warren Buffett’s net worth topped $US100 ($129) billion this week.
  • The Berkshire Hathaway CEO holds over $US99 ($127) billion worth of his company’s stock.
  • Buffett has donated almost half of his “A” shares to charity since 2006.
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Warren Buffett’s net worth climbed past $US100 ($129) billion on Wednesday, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index. He would now be the world’s wealthiest person if he hadn’t given a chunk of his fortune to charity.

The famed investor notched the milestone because Berkshire Hathaway’s stock price rose to a record high on Wednesday, boosting the conglomerate’s market capitalization to $US608 ($781) billion.

Buffett has 99% of his money in Berkshire stock, he said at the company’s annual meeting last year. He owned 248,734 of Berkshire’s “A” shares at the last count, which were worth $US99 ($127).2 billion as of Wednesday’s close. He also has some personal investments and a few “B” shares, lifting his net worth to over $US100 ($129) billion.

However, Buffett has donated around 226,000 “A” shares, or close to half of his stockpile, to philanthropic causes since 2006. If he had held on to all 475,000 of his shares, his net worth would be over $US189 ($243) billion today, catapulting him to the top of the rich list.

The current leader, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, boasts a $US180 ($231) billion fortune. Tesla CEO Elon Musk, who is second on the list, has a net worth of $US173 ($222) billion. Microsoft cofounder Bill Gates, whose foundation has been a major beneficiary of Buffett’s giving, trails the top two with a $US138 ($177) billion fortune.