We might be living in an age of #MeToo and #TimesUp, but when it comes to the world’s richest billionaires, it seems like old white dudes are still on top.
That’s the official word from Forbes, at any rate. The business magazine released its 32nd annual list of the world’s top money makers, and unsurprisingly, Amazon boss Jeff Bezos (who has a net worth of $112 billion USD), Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates ($90 billion) and famous investor Warren Buffet ($84 billion) rounded out the top three for 2018.
In fact, of the top 10 on Forbes‘ list, only one person — Mexico’s telecom mogul Carlos Slim ($67.1 billion), who came in at number seven — wasn’t a white man. And Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg ($71 billion), who placed fifth on the list, is the youngest of the 10 richest billionaires.
Rounding out the top 20, there are several top earners from countries outside the U.S. as well as two women. Alice Walton ($46 billion), the daughter of Walmart’s founder, placed 16th on Forbes‘ list and has made a name for herself curating art. The other female billionaire, L’Oreal chairwoman and heiress Francoise Bettencourt Meyers ($42.2 billion) is listed in 18th place.
Forbes assessed the net worth of 2,208 billionaires to create the list, who are worth a whopping $9.1 trillion together. According to the publication, that’s the highest net worth they’ve ever seen, which is also up 18 per cent from last year’s list.
As for that top 20? Yeah, they’re worth $1.2 trillion alone, a number that Forbes compares to the annual economic output of Mexico. Let’s say that again: the 20 richest people in the world have a combined net worth that’s equal to that of an entire country.
Staggering, is it not?
If you’re wealthy, the good news here seems to be that the rich are getting richer. There were 259 new names on the list, and those people dealt with everything from tech and aerospace to wedding dresses (like Spain’s Alberto Palatchi, who sold 90 per cent of his wedding dress company Pronovias). Trump, however, is one billionaire who took quite a financial hit last year. He lost $400 million USD in the past year alone.
It’s also worth noting that Forbes decided not to count the 10 billionaires from Saudi Arabia because of reports of asset seizures by the Saudi Crown Prince. Accuracy is key to this list’s ongoing success, after all.
Is it just me or is it kind of depressing to see just how much money some people make, especially when you consider all of the poverty out there? Sure, some of these top earners, like Bill Gates, put their cash to good use through foundations and charity work. But at the end of the day, most of us would be ecstatic to make a ‘measly’ $100,000. The thought of being worth a billion bucks? Well that’s just mind-blowing.
Unless, of course, you happen to be an old white man.