Mining moguls losing millions daily

September 5, 2012, 12:00 am Yahoo!7 Finance Yahoo!7

Australia’s richest mining magnates have lost around $15 billion over the past 4 months.

Australia’s richest mining magnates have lost around $15 billion over the past 4 months reports BRW. The plummeting price of iron ore, Australia’s biggest export, has contributed heavily to the decrease in net worth of some of Australia’s richest individuals.

Iron ore is used to make steel, and as demand wanes for steel in China the spot price for the resource has fallen almost 40 per cent since April. In one session alone, the price of the commodity slipped 5 per cent and ended at a two and half year low.

Hardest hit by the price slump is Gina Rinehart, who has lost around $9.5 billion in four months, estimates BRW. Earlier this year, Rinehart had an estimated wealth of $29 billion which made her the richest woman in the world. If the world’s second richest woman, Walmart heiress Christy Walton, has not lost a significant part of her $25 billion dollar fortune it’s likely she regained the top spot as the richest female on the planet.

Related: Rinehart loses title of world’s richest woman

While Rinehart looks to have lost almost a third of her total wealth, fellow outspoken mining mogul Andrew ‘Twiggy’ Forrest’s wealth has fallen by more than $2 billion, estimates BRW.

Forrest, who had an estimated worth of $9.41 billion earlier in the year, has been forced to spend some $38 million in recent days to buy 10 million shares in his Fortescue Metals Group.

Investor anxiety about the Fortescue’s massive debt level was rising as quickly as the iron ore price was falling before Forrest stepped in and increased his stake in the company.

Related: Fortescue boss hikes his shares by $39m

Related: Fortescue sells power station for $US300m

While Ivan Glasenberg is not as well known as the first two moguls he has still lost more than $1 billion over the past four months thanks to the price plunge. As the major shareholder in commodities trading giant Glencore International, Glasenberg has seen his wealth slump from $7.40 billion to $6.10 billion, estimates BRW.

Related: Grave global concerns for Australia’s economy

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