Bill Gates still richest American, Forbes says

view gallery VIEW GALLERY

Things are on the up for US billionaires with more than half of them adding to their net worth in a year which once again saw Bill Gates as the richest of them all, Forbes magazine said yesterday.

Gates, founder of Microsoft, was the richest person in the United States for the 17th year in a row with an estimated worth of $54bn, up $4bn from last year.



No 2 on the list was investor Warren Buffett, worth $45 bn, up $5 bn. Oracle founder Larry Ellison's net worth was unchanged, in third place, at $27 bn. Christy Walton, heir to Walmart founder Sam Walton's fortune, was in fourth place with $24 bn, up $2.5 bn.



In stark contrast to the 2009 Forbes 400 list, 217 of the tycoons are now worth more than they were a year ago. Just 84 of the billionaires had a decrease in wealth.



In 2009 a whopping 314 members of the exclusive club had experienced a decrease in their wealth.



The top 10 gained $24.9 bn. The same group had shed almost $40 bn last year.



The total wealth of the group is up eight per cent, besting the Standard & Poor's 500 index, which measured a stock market increase of just 1 per cent, Forbes said.



The Forbes 400 are worth a combined $1.37 trillion, compared with $1.27 trillion last year.



The price of admission to the list is back up to $1 bn from 2009 when $950m was enough to make the top 400.



There are no new entries or drop-offs in the top 10 but the list shuffled. The Koch brothers, heads of energy and manufacturing giant Koch Industries, now rank above three other members of the Walton family and New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, founder of news and information company Bloomberg LP, who round out the top 10.



Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg, No 35, saw the largest relative increase, more than tripling his fortune to $6.9 bn from $2 bn. Fellow Facebook co-founders Dustin Moskovitz and Eduardo Saverin join the list with fortunes of $1.4 bn and $1.15 bn, respectively. Born eight days after Zuckerberg, 26-year-old Moskovitz is the world's youngest bnaire.



The oldest tycoon on the list is David Rockefeller Sr, 95, worth $2.4 bn.



Media magnate Oprah Winfrey comes in at No 130 and is one of 42 women on the list.



Automobile heir William Ford Sr. made the list for the first time since 2005, at the 385th spot with $1 bn after Ford Motors Co's stock rose 50 per cent and hit a 5-year-high.



California is the state with the most billionaires - 83 - among them No. 332 Meg Whitman, worth $1.2 bn, the Republican candidate for governor of the state in November elections.



The full Forbes 400 list can be seen at www.forbes.com/Forbes400.

PROMOTED VIDEO
News
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs People

Chief Executive

£28, 700: Whiskey Whiskey Tango: Property Management Company is seeking a brig...

COO / Chief Operating Officer

£80 - 100k + Bonus: Guru Careers: A COO / Chief Operating Officer is needed to...

HR Manager - Kent - £45,000

£40000 - £45000 per annum: Ashdown Group: HR Manager / Training Manager (L&D /...

HR Manager - Edgware, London - £45,000

£40000 - £45000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: HR Manager - Edgware, Lon...

Day In a Page

Isis is an hour from Baghdad, the Iraq army has little chance against it, and air strikes won't help

Isis an hour away from Baghdad -

and with no sign of Iraq army being able to make a successful counter-attack
Turner Prize 2014 is frustratingly timid

Turner Prize 2014 is frustratingly timid

The exhibition nods to rich and potentially brilliant ideas, but steps back
Last chance to see: Half the world’s animals have disappeared over the last 40 years

Last chance to see...

The Earth’s animal wildlife population has halved in 40 years
So here's why teenagers are always grumpy - and it's not what you think

Truth behind teens' grumpiness

Early school hours mess with their biological clocks
Why can no one stop hackers putting celebrities' private photos online?

Hacked photos: the third wave

Why can no one stop hackers putting celebrities' private photos online?
Royal Ballet star dubbed 'Charlize Theron in pointe shoes' takes on Manon

Homegrown ballerina is on the rise

Royal Ballet star Melissa Hamilton is about to tackle the role of Manon
Education, eduction, education? Our growing fascination with what really goes on in school

Education, education, education

TV documentaries filmed in classrooms are now a genre in their own right
It’s reasonable to negotiate with the likes of Isis, so why don’t we do it and save lives?

It’s perfectly reasonable to negotiate with villains like Isis

So why don’t we do it and save some lives?
This man just ran a marathon in under 2 hours 3 minutes. Is a 2-hour race in sight?

Is a sub-2-hour race now within sight?

Dennis Kimetto breaks marathon record
We shall not be moved, say Stratford's single parents fighting eviction

Inside the E15 'occupation'

We shall not be moved, say Stratford single parents
Air strikes alone will fail to stop Isis

Air strikes alone will fail to stop Isis

Talks between all touched by the crisis in Syria and Iraq can achieve as much as the Tornadoes, says Patrick Cockburn
Nadhim Zahawi: From a refugee on welfare to the heart of No 10

Nadhim Zahawi: From a refugee on welfare to the heart of No 10

The Tory MP speaks for the first time about the devastating effect of his father's bankruptcy
Witches: A history of misogyny

Witches: A history of misogyny

The sexist abuse that haunts modern life is nothing new: women have been 'trolled' in art for 500 years
Shona Rhimes interview: Meet the most powerful woman in US television

Meet the most powerful woman in US television

Writer and producer of shows like Grey's Anatomy, Shonda Rhimes now has her own evening of primetime TV – but she’s taking it in her stride
'Before They Pass Away': Endangered communities photographed 'like Kate Moss'

Endangered communities photographed 'like Kate Moss'

Jimmy Nelson travelled the world to photograph 35 threatened tribes in an unashamedly glamorous style