A customer pushes a shopping cart after at a Walmart Inc. store in Burbank, California, U.S. (Photographer: Patrick T. Fallon/Bloomberg)

Walton Family Fortune Increases $3.3 Billion on Walmart Earnings

(Bloomberg) -- Walmart Inc.’s best holiday quarter in a decade meant a $3.3 billion gain Tuesday in the Walton family fortune.

Shares of the world’s largest retailer rose 2.2 percent after it reported fourth-quarter results, pushing the wealth of the founder’s family to $175.2 billion, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index. It’s increased more than $14 billion since the first of the year.

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Walton Family Fortune Increases $3.3 Billion on Walmart Earnings

The bump to the world’s richest family’s net worth comes as some politicians, including Senator Bernie Sanders, are calling for checks on such enormous fortunes. Sanders, the self-described democratic socialist who announced Tuesday he’s making another run for president as a Democrat, criticized the family’s wealth in a tweet earlier this month.

“The Walton family makes more money in one minute than Walmart workers do in an entire year,” the Feb. 14 tweet read. “This is what we mean when we talk about a rigged economy.”

Walton Family Fortune Increases $3.3 Billion on Walmart Earnings

The bulk of the family fortune -- about 1.5 billion Walmart shares -- is controlled through two holding companies, which are mostly owned by Rob, Jim and Alice Walton, the children of co-founder Sam Walton. The siblings have a combined net worth of about $141.5 billion after gaining $2.6 billion Tuesday. Other heirs, including Lukas and Christy Walton, Nancy Walton Laurie and Ann Walton Kroenke, gained a combined $676.9 million.

A spokesman for the family didn’t immediately respond to a request for a comment.

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