Taylor Swift becomes youngest ever entry on Forbes most powerful women list

List, dominated by businesswoman and politicans, was headed by German Chancellor Angela Merkel

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The Independent Online

Taylor Swift has become the youngest woman ever to be included on Forbes most powerful women list.

The 25-year-old US singer made number 65 on the Forbes annual list of the most powerful women in the world, a list dominated by politicians, activists and businesswomen – and topped by German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

Forbes, which has put together the list since 2004, defended the choice explaining Swift has “not only broken record sales and captivated the world with her fantastically honest lyrics, but she has proven herself as an impressive businesswoman.”

Swift, a seven-time Grammy winner, has sold more than 40 million albums and 100 million single downloads worldwide – making her one of the best-selling artist of all time and now the youngest entry on the list by six years.


The next youngest on the list is Elizabeth Holmes (no.72), founder and CEO of innovative blood-testing company Theranos, and the world’s youngest female self-made billionaire, worth an estimated $4.6 billion.

Swift joins other illustrious women in the media, music or film industries, including Beyoncé, no.21 (who first made the list in 2010 aged 28), Sofia Vergara, no.57; Ellen DeGeneres, no.50; Angelina Jolie, no.54; Oprah Winfrey, no.12; and Shakira, no.81. 

For the second year running Merkel tops the list, followed by US presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, who was in the first list in 2004 and has made the top 10 in the past five consecutive years.

Melinda Gates, of the Bill and Melinda Foundation, was number 3, followed by chairwoman of the US Federal Reserve Bank Janet Yellen and then Mary Barra – CEO of General Motors (GM), one of the world’s largest car makers by individual sale units. Michelle Obama was no.10 on the list.

There was not a single British woman in the top 10 and the UK’s top entry (at no.41) was the Queen.

Only 12 Europeans made the total cut of a list dominated by the US, with three Africans, four women from the Middle East and four from Latin American. Women from Asia-Pacific made the next best showing, with 18 on the list.