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Published: Tuesday, 3/6/2012 - Updated: 2 years ago

BLOOMBERG BILLIONAIRES

Mexican tycoon tops list of world’s richest

BLOOMBERG NEWS
Slim Slim
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NEW YORK — Carlos Slim, the telecommunications tycoon who controls Mexico’s America Movil, is the richest person on Earth, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, a ranking of the world’s 20 wealthiest individuals.

The 72-year-old’s net worth fell $478.4 million in one day to $68.5 billion as of the close of markets on Friday.

U.S. moguls Bill Gates and Warren Buffett placed second and third on the list compiled by Bloomberg News.

Brazil’s Eike Batista, who ranks 10th, still covets the top spot after vowing a year ago that he would become the world’s wealthiest man by 2015. He trails Mr. Slim by a little under $39 billion.

“I’m competitive,” Mr. Batista said by phone Friday from Rio de Janeiro.”It’s Brazil’s time to be No. 1. Brazilians have always admired the American dream. What’s happening in Brazil is the Brazilian dream, and I happen to be the example.”

The Bloomberg Billionaires Index takes measure of the world’s wealthiest people, based on market and economic changes and Bloomberg News reporting. Each net worth figure is updated every business day. The valuations are listed in U.S. dollars.

Monday’s ranking was published following the release of new billionaires’ profile pages in the Bloomberg Professional service. The profiles feature an analysis of how each billionaire’s fortune was calculated.

Mr. Slim’s fortune has increased 11 percent this year, according to the index. A spokesman for Mr. Slim did not immediately return a telephone request for comment.

Mr. Gates, 56, co-founder of Microsoft Corp. in Redmond, Wash., is worth $62.4 billion, down $102.1 million on Friday and up 11 percent year to date. The fortune of Mr. Buffett, 81, chairman of Berkshire Hathaway Inc., based in Omama, declined $336.9 million to $43.8 billion on Friday and is up 2.4 percent in 2012. Almost all of Mr. Buffett’s wealth is in Berkshire Hathaway, the publicly traded holding company he has run since 1965.

The combined net worth of the 20 richest people is $676.8 billion. Nine are Americans, including three from the family of Sam Walton, the founder of Wal-Mart Stores Inc.

Number seven is Larry Ellison, 67, chief executive officer of Redwood City, Calif.-based Oracle Corp., the world’s third-largest software maker after Microsoft and SAP.

His $38 billion fortune puts him $4 billion ahead of the Koch brothers — Charles, 76, and David, 71.

Each owns 42 percent of Koch Industries Inc., a refiner and chemical maker based in Wichita, Kan., and one of the biggest closely held companies in the world by revenue.

Mr. Batista, 55, whose investments range from iron ore to coal, is worth $29.8 billion, up $133.9 million on Friday. His fortune has grown 32 percent this year, the most on the list.

Mark Zuckerberg, the 27-year-old founder of Facebook, the world’s largest social-networking company, did not make the cut.

Based on a roughly $100 billion valuation, at which the Menlo Park, Calif., company has been trading in the private market, Mr. Zuckerberg’s stake may be worth $21 billion, or about 25 percent less than previous estimates, once Facebook holds its initial public offering.

The reason: Facebook will issue more than 500 million shares of its Class B stock at the offering, diluting Mr. Zuckerberg’s ownership to 21 percent after he exercises 120 million options and sells about 42 million shares to cover the tax bill associated with the gain from those options.



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