U.S. billionaires‘ total wealth surged by more than $565 billion, an increase of 19.15 percent, since its low point near the beginning of the pandemic, according to calculations to update a report by the Institute for Policy Studies (IPS). The figures date from March 18 – the rough start date of the pandemic shutdown, when most federal and state economic restrictions were in place. During the same 11 weeks, 42.6 million US workers filed for unemployment (1.877 million in the last week). The number of workers receiving jobless benefits is holding steady at 21.5 million, according to The Wall Street Journal.

“In a turbulent week in the life of the nation, these statistics remind us that we are more economically and racially divided than at any time in decades,” said Chuck Collins, a co-author of the report, Billionaire Bonanza 2020. “Our moral, economic and physical health as a society depends on building a post-pandemic economy that works for everyone, not just the billionaire class. Surging billionaire wealth juxtaposed with the suffering and plight of millions undermines the social solidarity required for us to recover together in the years ahead.”

According to IPS calculations, during the past week, the U.S. billionaire class experienced a $79 billion jump in total wealth, an increase of 2.3 percent. For the group, May 27 wealth was $3,432,979,108,000. At market close yesterday, June 3, total wealth was $3,512,041,310,000.

As markets have risen since the start of the pandemic, certain individual fortunes have surged significantly over market gains. In the eleven weeks since March 18, these billionaires have seen their wealth accelerate:

• Jeff Bezos — up $36.2 billion

• Mark Zuckerberg — up $30.1 billion

• Elon Musk — up $14.1 billion

• Sergey Brin — up $13.9 billion

• Larry Page — up $13.7 billion

• Steve Ballmer — up $13.3 billion

• MacKenzie Bezos — up $12.6 billion

• Michael Bloomberg — up $12.1 billion

• Bill Gates — up $11.8 billion

• Phil Knight — up $11.6 billion

• Larry Ellison — up $8.5 billion

• Warren Buffett — up $7.7 billion

• Michael Dell — up $7.6 billion

• Sheldon Adelson — up $6.1 billion