Written by Staff Writer
04 Mar, 2014 | 6:41 am
Bill Gates reclaimed the top spot on the Forbes rich list this year after a four-year hiatus,
shoving aside Mexico’s telecom tycoon Carlos Slim Helu.
Microsoft’s (MSFT, Fortune 500) founder Gates was propelled to the top spot primarily because of a rally in the software company’s stock, said Forbes, which published its annual list of the world’s richest billionaires on Monday. Gates is now valued at $76 billion, compared to $67 billion last year, when he was No. 2 on the list.
Slim built the bulk of his $72 billion fortune from his controlling interest in telecom company America Movil (AMX), which dominates the landline and mobile phone networks in Mexico. But he lost his four-year status as the world’s richest billionaire because shares in his mining company Minera Frisco plunged more than 50% last year in tandem with prices of gold and copper, said Forbes. He is the only the billionaire in the top 10 to have lost money.
Gates and Slim are followed by Spanish retail mogul Amancio Ortega, worth $64 billion, Berkshire Hathaway (BRKA, Fortune 500) CEO and renowned investor Warren Buffett, at $58.2 billion, and Oracle (ORCL, Fortune 500) founder Larry Ellison, $48 billion.
The list goes on and on this year, because there are more billionaires than ever, according to Forbes. There are 1,645 billionaires, which is 268 more than the previous year. This is the largest annual increase of billionaires.
There were also 42 new women billionaires, a record, for a total of 172. Facebook’s COO and author of feminist manifesto “Lean In,” Sheryl Sandberg, joined the billionaire’s club for the first time.
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