Meta Platforms CEO Mark Zuckerberg is now the fifth richest person in the world following a surge in Meta’s share price that has seen his net worth increase more than any other individual this year, MarketWatch reported.

In 2024 so far, Zuckerberg has already seen his net worth increase by $14.3 billion, in movements that have put him in fifth place on Bloomberg’s Billionaire Index, ahead of former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer and behind Microsoft Co-founder Bill Gates.

Zuckerberg, who owns a 13 percent stake in Meta, is now set to see his net worth boom even further in the coming days, on the back of a surge in shares in the social media company he first set up in 2004 when he was a student at Harvard University, MarketWatch reported.

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Shares in Meta increased 15 percent in post-market trading on Thursday, following the Facebook owner’s decision to start declaring its first-ever dividend on the back of a sharp increase in the company’s revenues.

The surge in Meta’s share price in out-of-hours trading on Thursday saw the company’s market cap increase by more than $140 billion to $1.17 trillion, MarketWatch reported.

Meta shares have increased by 14 percent in 2024 and by 109 percent over the previous 12 months, with stock in the California company up 933 percent since Facebook’s initial public offering in 2012.

Facebook changed its name to Meta Platforms in October 2021.

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