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The Top Ten Richest People In The World

The ranks of the wealthiest people on the planet include 9 self-made Americans and a French luxury goods tycoon.

Last update: August 1, 2023, 9 A.M. EDT


Billionaires are some of the most powerful people on Earth, wielding significant influence over huge parts of the global economy and playing key roles in everything from international politics and media to philanthropy and scientific innovation. Many have created companies that employ tens of thousands or even hundreds of thousands of employees around the world and are behind some of the best known brands, including Microsoft, Amazon, Tesla, Google and Nike. The majority are self-made, meaning they created their fortunes themselves, rather than inheriting them. Others, like Rupert Murdoch and Mukesh Ambani, had a bit more of a leg up early on by joining their family businesses, but expanded their fortunes greatly and went on to create empires in their respective industries.

Forbes has been keeping track of the world’s billionaires since 1987. This year, we found 2,640 of them for our annual list. Throughout the year, we update their fortunes on a daily basis. Many billionaires hold much of their net worth in the stock of the company they founded. As that stock price moves, their fortune moves along with it. For most of 2023, French luxury goods magnate Bernard Arnault was the world’s richest person, per Forbes—but that changed on June 8, 2023, when Tesla CEO Elon Musk overtook Arnault to become No. 1 in the world again, worth nearly $238 billion. As of August 1, 2023, Musk is still the world’s richest person—a position he also held for much of 2022.

Surging shares of Meta Platforms—which owns Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp—pushed Mark Zuckerberg back up into the world’s top ten richest earlier this summer for the first time since January 2022. As of August 1, Zuckerberg is the world’s seventh richest, worth nearly $113 billion, up $11 billion and two rungs since last month, per Forbes’ estimates.

Google cofounder Sergey Brin moves back into the top 10 this month as shares of its parent company Alphabet rose nearly 10%. He is now ranked 9th richest in the world, just behind his cofounder Larry Page.

Here are the 10 richest people in the world as of August 1, 2023 at 9 a.m. Eastern time, according to Forbes.

Stock prices fluctuate routinely, so these net worths may change on a daily basis. Forbes tracks the daily changes on our Real Time list of billionaires.


Key Facts

Elon Musk

is the richest person in the world, a position he held for much of 2022 as well.

Bernard Arnault

fell to No. 2 richest in early June 2023. He was the richest person in the world for the first five months of 2023.

9/10

of the richest people in the world are Americans, including Jeff Bezos, Larry Ellison and Bill Gates.

Gautam Adani

of India fell from third richest in the world on January 24, 2023. He is ranked No. 24 in the world as of July 1, 2023.

All

of the top ten richest people on August 1 are men.


Who are the top 10 richest people in the world?*

1. Elon Musk

2. Bernard Arnault

3. Jeff Bezos

4. Larry Ellison

5. Bill Gates

6. Warren Buffett

7. Mark Zuckerberg

8. Larry Page

9. Sergey Brin

10. Steve Ballmer

*As of August 1, 2023 at 10 a.m. ET


Marlena Sloss/Bloomberg

1. Elon Musk

Net worth: $241.3 B

Source: Tesla, SpaceX, Twitter

Age: 51

Residence: Austin, Texas

Citizenship: U.S.

Musk is CEO of electric car company Tesla, rocket firm SpaceX and social media company Twitter. He owns 23% of Tesla between stock and options, but has pledged more than half of his stock as collateral for loans. The car company accounts for about two-thirds of his fortune. He bought Twitter for $44 billion in October 2022 and owns an estimated 74% of the social media company, which is now worth less than half what he paid for it.

Originally from South Africa, Musk moved to Canada before his 18th birthday, worked a variety of jobs, enrolled at Queen’s University in Ontario and then transferred to University of Pennsylvania, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in economics.

In 2000, he merged an online bank he cofounded, X.com with a similar outfit cofounded by Peter Thiel to form PayPal, which eBay bought in 2002 for $1.4 billion. He founded SpaceX in 2002 in El Segundo, near Los Angeles. In 2004 he joined Tesla as an investor and chairman, a year after it was founded; he was later granted the cofounder title. Musk, who became CEO of Tesla in 2008, took the company public in 2010. Its market capitalization soared during 2020 and 2021. In September 2021, Musk became the world’s richest person. In November 2021, his fortune peaked at a whopping $320 billion.

Musk became the world’s richest person on June 8, 2023 and still ranks No. 1 on August 1. Tesla shares have more than doubled since the start of the year, , propelling Musk’s fortune higher. Musk was also the world’s richest person for most of 2022—until December, when a drop in Tesla’s share price pushed down the value of his fortune.


Jamel Toppin for Forbes

2. Bernard Arnault

Net worth: $226.8 B

Source: LVMH/ luxury goods

Age: 74

Residence: Paris

Citizenship: France

Bernard Arnault is CEO and chairman of LVMH, the largest luxury goods company in the world with some 70 fashion and cosmetics brands. Among its most notable: Louis Vuitton, Christian Dior, Moet & Chandon and Sephora. In January 2021, LVMH acquired jeweler Tiffany & Co. for $15.8 billion.

Arnault’s father made millions in the construction business; to get his start, Arnault used $15 million of that fortune to buy Christian Dior.

All five of Arnault’s children work in parts of the LVMH empire. In January 2023, Arnault appointed his daughter Delphine to run Dior, the second largest brand in the group.

Arnault was the world’s richest person for most of the first half of 2023; he fell to No. 2 on June 8, 2023. As of August 1, Arnault is worth $14.5 billion less than Elon Musk, per Forbes’ estimates.


Michael Prince for Forbes

3. Jeff Bezos

Net worth: $156.3 B

Source: Amazon

Age: 59

Residence: Medina, Washington

Citizenship: U.S.

Jeff Bezos stepped down as CEO of e-commerce giant Amazon in July 2021 but remains chairman; that same month he went to space on a rocket built by private rocket company Blue Origin, which he founded and has funded with billions of dollars. Between July 1 and July 31, 2023 his fortune rose by more than $3 billion.

Bezos founded online retailer Amazon.com in his garage in Seattle in 1994, after he left a job in New York at hedge fund D.E. Shaw. Amazon began as an online bookseller at a time when few people bought goods online. The company grew to dominate cloud storage and moved into movie and series production to feed Amazon Prime Video.

Bezos overtook Bill Gates to become the richest person in the world in July 2017. He and Gates traded the number one and number two richest spots off and on. Bezos was the world’s richest person on Forbes’ list of the World’s Billionaires from 2018 through 2021; he dropped to second richest on the 2022 billionaires list. He dropped to fourth richest but moved back to No. 3 on January 25, 2023 as the fortune of India’s Gautam Adani (formerly No. 3 richest) fell.

In 2019, Bezos and his wife MacKenzie divorced; as part of the settlement, she got 4% of Amazon’s shares and he kept 12%. He has since sold more of his stake and owns just under 10% of the company. Since Amazon went public in 1997, Forbes calculates that he has sold more than $27 billion worth of his stock. Through his Bezos Expeditions he has invested in an array of companies, including Airbnb and software firm Workday.


Jamel Toppin for Forbes

4. Larry Ellison

Net worth: $147.5 B

Source: Oracle

Age: 78

Residence: Lanai, Hawaii

Citizenship: U.S.

Larry Ellison cofounded software firm Oracle in 1977 and ran it as CEO until 2014; he now serves as chairman and Chief Technology Officer of the company. Over the years Oracle has made a series of large acquisitions, buying Sun Microsystems in 2010.

In 2012, Ellison bought the Hawaiian island of Lanai for $300 million. He moved from California to Lanai in 2020. Ellison invested in Tesla and served on the board of the car company from 2018 through August 2022.

For eight days in June 2023, Ellison overtook Jeff Bezos as the third richest person in the world following a rise in Oracle’s share price. Shares then receded and Ellison fell back to fourth richest. His fortune dipped by less than $2 billion between July 1 and July 31, 2023.


Forbes

5. Bill Gates

Net worth: $119.2 B

Source: Microsoft, investments

Age: 67

Residence: Medina, Washington

Citizenship: U.S.

As a teenager, Gates became passionate about computer programming. He dropped out of Harvard to cofound software firm Microsoft with his high school friend Paul Allen in 1975, creating one of the first software programs available for the nascent personal computer industry. He was CEO of the company for 25 years and remained chairman until 2014. He eventually stepped off the board in 2020 but told Forbes in early 2023 that he still spends about 10% of his time consulting with teams at Microsoft. These days he has investments in dozens of companies including waste removal firm Republic Services and agricultural equipment maker Deere & Co., and is one of the largest owners of farmland in the U.S.

Forbes first listed Gates as a billionaire in 1987; he was the richest person in the world from 1995 through 2017 (except in 2008 and from 2010 through 2013). Largely due to the $59 billion he has donated to the Gates Foundation, including a $20 billion gift in July 2022, he was overtaken as the world’s richest person in 2018 by Jeff Bezos. He and Melinda French Gates divorced in 2021; she received at least $6 billion in stock as part of the divorce settlement. Forbes estimates that Gates’ fortune was mostly flat in July.


Timothy Archibald for Forbes

6. Warren Buffett

Net worth: $117.9

Source: Berkshire Hathaway

Age: 92

Residence: Omaha, Nebraska

Citizenship: U.S.

Known as the “Oracle of Omaha,” Warren Buffett is one of the most successful investors of all time. He runs investing conglomerate Berkshire Hathaway, which owns dozens of companies, including insurer Geico, battery maker Duracell and restaurant chain Dairy Queen. The son of a U.S. congressman, he first bought stock at age 11 and first filed taxes at age 13.

Buffett created the Giving Pledge with Bill Gates and Melinda French Gates in 2010, asking billionaires to commit to give away at least half their fortune to charitable groups. Buffett has said he would donate 99% of his fortune. So far he’s donated $51.5 billion in Berkshire Hathaway stock to the Gates Foundation and his kids’ foundations. That makes him the most generous billionaire on the planet. Despite giving away $4.6 billion worth of his Berkshire Hathaway shares in mid-June, his fortune rose by more than $6 in July.


Getty Images

7. Mark Zuckerberg

Net worth: $112.8 billion

Source: Facebook

Age: 39

Residence: Palo Alto, California

Citizenship: U.S.

Zuckerberg cofounded Facebook—now called Meta Platforms—when he was a student at Harvard University. It has grown to be the world’s largest social network, with nearly 3 billion users. The company also owns Instagram and WhatsApp. Zuckerberg, the CEO of Meta Platforms, took the company public in 2012 and still owns about 13% of it. He and his wife Priscilla Chan have pledged to direct 99% of their stock in the company toward measures that promote human potential. One effort is to develop tools to help others cure, manage or prevent all disease; Zuckerberg and Chan spoke to Forbes earlier this year about their efforts.

Zuckerberg rejoined the world’s top 10 richest earlier this summer for the first time since January 2022, as the result of a rise in the price of Meta Platforms’ stock. He moves up two rungs from number 9 on July 1, as his fortune increased by $11 billion.


Getty Images

8. Larry Page

Net worth: $112 billion

Source: Google

Age: 50

Residence: Palo Alto, California

Citizenship: U.S.

Page cofounded search engine Google with fellow Stanford PhD student Sergey Brin in 1998 and served as CEO until 2001 and from 2011 to 2015. He now serves as a board member of Google’s parent Alphabet and continues to be a controlling shareholder.

Page is a founding investor in space exploration company Planetary Resources.

He moved into the top 10 richest in the world following a notable 15% jump in the share price of Alphabet in the month of May. His fortune rose nearly $10 billion in July, Forbes estimates.


Getty Images

9. Sergey Brin

Net worth: $106.3 billion

Source: Google

Age: 49

Residence: Los Altos, California

Citizenship: U.S.

Sergey Brin stepped down as president of Alphabet, parent company of Google, in December 2019 but remains a controlling shareholder and a board member. He cofounded Google with Larry Page in 1998 after the two met at Stanford University while studying for advanced degrees in computer science. Brin, who came to the U.S. from Russia when he was 6 years old in the wake of anti-Semitism against his family, is the richest immigrant in America. He now serves as a board member of Google’s parent Alphabet and continues to be a controlling shareholder. He returns to the top 10 this month, thanks to a nearly 10% increase in the value of Alphabet shares.


Mark Lennihan/AP

10. Steve Ballmer

Net worth: $102.8 billion

Source: Microsoft, investments

Age: 67

Residence: Hunts Point, Washington

Citizenship: U.S.

Ballmer, a classmate of Bill Gates at Harvard University, ran Microsoft as its CEO from 2000 to 2014. He joined Microsoft as employee number 30 in 1980 after dropping out of the MBA program at Stanford University.

The year that Ballmer retired from Microsoft, he purchased the Los Angeles Clippers team for $2 billion—a record high for an NBA team at the time. Forbes now values the team at $3.9 billion.

Ballmer replaces Mexican telecom magnate Carlos Slim in the top 10, even as shares of Microsoft were mostly flat in July.


Who is the richest man in the world?

As of August 1, 2023, the richest man in the world is Elon Musk, the CEO of electric car company Tesla; he’s worth $241.3 billion. He moved into the number one spot in June, overtaking Bernard Arnault of France.


Who is the richest woman in the world?

The richest woman in the world is Francoise Bettencourt Meyers of France. As of July 1, 2023, she is worth $92.3 billion and is the world’s 13th richest person. Her fortune lies in her ownership of shares in cosmetics giant L’Oreal, which she inherited from her late mother. Her grandfather was the founder of L’Oreal.


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