Jeff Bezos Overtakes Bill Gates To Become World’s Richest Man

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos has overtaken Bill Gates and is now the richest person in the world, with a fortune topping $90 billion for the first time ever.

When markets opened on Thursday, Bezos had a net worth of $90.6 billion, putting him $500 million ahead of Microsoft founder Bill Gates. Amazon stock opened up 1.6% on Thursday, adding $1.4 billion to Bezos’ net worth. That was enough to put him ahead of Gates, who was last surpassed on Forbes’ real-time rankings for just two days nearly a year ago by Spanish retail giant Amancio Ortega.

Forbes started tracking billionaires around the globe in 1987. Bezos is now the seventh person to hold the title of the world’s richest person and the third American to top the global ranks besides Gates and Berkshire Hathaway CEO Warren Buffett.

While  Buffett both appeared on Forbes’ first ranking of America’s 400 Richest people in 1982 and Gates joined four years later, Bezos is a newer addition to Forbes’ wealth rankings. He first appeared on the Forbes 400 in 1998, a year after Amazon went public, with a $1.6 billion fortune. Bezos ranked third richest in the world on Forbes 2017 list of the World’s Billionaires, published in March, with a fortune of $72.8 billion.

Bezos would be nowhere close to being the world’s wealthiest person had Gates not given so much of his fortune to philanthropy. Gates, who created the Giving Pledge with Buffett to encourage billionaires to give at least half of their wealth to charitable causes, had given away $31.1 billion over the course of his lifetime through end of 2016.  Forbes estimates that Bezos, who has not signed the pledge, had given approximately $100 million to charity through the end of 2015. In June, Bezos tweeted out a request for ideas for his philanthropy, garnering thousands of responses.

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  • George_Costanza

    It is about time for Amazon to be dissolved for anti-competitive & monopolistic practices.
    And turning the whole sales tax thing on its head: you can’t tax goods that originate out-of-state, that only pass through your state. You can tax out of state goods that enter-that is how you protect your free market; a mom & pop shop doesn’t have economies of scale that a multi-state/multi-national corporation does. So the mom & pop shop doesn’t pay sales tax, whereas that big business does.

  • Sam Oconnel

    The average man should be asking HOW these people like gates and bezos are making so much money when they add NOTHING to society. I suspect they are criminals, therefore subject to asset forfeiture.