Gates tops Forbes US rich list – again

22 Sep 2011

Microsoft founder and philanthropist Bill Gates

With his fortune of US$59bn, Microsoft founder and philanthropist Bill Gates has once again made it to the top of The Forbes 400 list of the most wealthy Americans.

Gates, who has given away US$28bn to date, saw his fortune increase by US$5bn over the last year and tops the list for the 18th year in a row.

Warren Buffett takes second place with his US$39bn fortune, which has been dented by US$6bn over the last year due to his Berkshire Hathaway shares falling by 10pc and the fact he gave away US$3.27bn.

In third place is Oracle founder Larry Ellison, who is worth US$33bn, up US$6bn over the last year.

Elsewhere, investor George Soros, who is worth US$22bn, enters the top 10 for the first time. Soros added US$7.8bn to his net worth over the last year.

The richest woman on the list, in sixth place, is Christy Walton, who inherited her fortune from her late husband John Walton, and has a net worth of US$24.5bn.

And Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg enters the top 20 for the first time in 14th place, with a net worth of US$17.5bn. His fortune has increased by US$10.6bn since the last listing, making him the biggest winner of the year.  

According to Forbes Magazine, the wealthiest 400 people in the US are worth a combined US$1.53trn, a 12pc increase over last year. The magazine notes an all-time high of 70pc of this year’s list are self-made, up from 55pc in 1997.

Top 10 wealthiest Americans, according to The Forbes 400 list:

1.      Bill Gates (Microsoft) – US$59bn

2.     Warren Buffet (Berkshire Hathaway) – US$39bn

3.     Larry Ellison (Oracle) – US$33bn

4.     Charles Koch (Diversified) – US$25bn

4.     David Koch (Diversified) – US$25bn

6.     Christy Walton (Wal-Mart) – US$24.5bn

7.     George Soros (Hedge Funds) – US$22bn

8.     Sheldon Adelson (Casinos) – US$21.5bn

9.     Jim Walton (Wal-Mart) – US$21.1bn

10.    Alice Walton (Wal-Mart) – US$20.9bn

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