NEW YORK: Jeff Bezos remains the world’s richest person, ahead of Bill Gates and Warren Buffett, according to the latest Forbes list of the ultra wealthy, while far behind President Donald Trump jumped 51 spots in the ranking.
While things are largely stable up on top of the list, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg dropped three spots and former New York mayor Michael Bloomberg rose by two.
According to the list announced Tuesday (Wednesday in Manila), the riches of Bezos, 55, have swelled by $19 billion in one year and he is now worth $131 billion.
Bezos, who holds 16 percent of Amazon and whose wealth now makes him a target of the left wing of the US Democratic Party, has widened the money gap between himself and Gates, the philanthropist and co-founder of Microsoft.
Gates, 63, had seen his wealth grow to $96.5 billion, up from $90 billion last year, said Forbes.
Third place is held by Buffett, 88, although he did get stung in late February by a deep plunge in shares of US processed food maker Kraft Heinz, in which he had a large stake.
Buffett’s fortune slipped by $1.5 billion to $82.5 billion, the magazine estimated.
It is more or less after this trio that things start to get shaken up on the Forbes list.
The CEO of French luxury good company LVMH, Bernard Arnault, held on to fourth place. But Zuckerberg lost $9 billion in net worth and slipped from fifth to eighth.
Ahead of Zuckerberg now are Mexican tycoon Carlos Slim, Zara and Inditex founder Amancio Ortega of Spain, and Oracle co-founder Larry Ellison.
Bloomberg rose from 11th to ninth place as his fortune increased to $55.5 billion from $50 billion, said Forbes.
Americans still dominate the list with 14 of the top 20 billionaires from the US.
Non-Americans among the top 20 include India’s Mukesh Ambani, chairman of Reliance Industries, in 13th place, and China’s Ma Huateng, head of the Chinese internet giant Tencent, who rounds out the top 20.
Forbes estimates Trump’s wealth at $3.1 billion, unchanged from last year.
While 994 people from last year’s ranking saw their wealth drop — a record, according to Forbes — Trump rose in the Forbes ranking from 766 last year to 715 this year.
Manny Villar ‘richest Filipino’
Meanwhile, Manuel “Manny” Villar, is the richest Filipino.
Ranked 317th out of over 2,000, Villar’s net worth is around $5.5 billion (P287.4 billion).
The former senator is the chairman of Starmalls and Vista & Landscapes.
He was followed by JG Summit founder John Gokongwei Jr. whose net worth was $5.1 billion (P266.6 billion); International Container Terminal Services’ (ICTSI) Enrique Razon Jr., with a net worth of $4.8 billion (P250.9 billion); and LT Group founder Lucio Tan with $4.4 billion (P230 billion).
Other Filipinos who made the list include Jollibee founder Tony Tan Caktiong and his family, San Miguel’s Ramon Ang, Alliance Global’s Andrew Tan, Eduardo “Danding” Cojuangco, Robert Coyiuto Jr., Century Pacific’s Ricardo Po and his family, and Alphaland’s Roberto Ongpin.
All six children of the late SM founder Henry Sy Sr. — Hans, Herbert, Harley, Henry Jr., Teresita and Elizabeth — were also on the list. /
WITH ARIC JOHN SY CUA