Belfast Telegraph

Listing the billionaires who own most of our planet

By Antonia Molloy

For most people, just the thought of making it onto the list of the world's richest 1%is ludicrous. But even at the top of the pyramid, there's a huge disparity in wealth.

Research by Oxfam revealed that by next year the world's richest 1% will own more than the other 99%. Yet within that top percentile there remains a wealth gap of billions of dollars.

To be among the top 1% of earners an individual needs to earn in the hundreds of thousands - but to be among the top 1% of the top 1% that figure needs to increase by the tens of thousands.

According to Oxfam's publication, there are 1,765 billionaires in the world today. At the bottom of the list are those with a wealth of merely $1bn, while at the top are the likes of Bill Gates, Carlos Slim Helu and Amancio Ortega, with estimated riches of $76bn, $72bn and $64bn respectively.

While many have amassed their fortunes by birthright, others, including the top five, are self-made.

1. Bill Gates: $76bn - Microsoft (self-made)

2. Carlos Slim Helu and family: $72bn - Telecom (self-made)

3. Amancio Ortega: $64bn - Zara (self-made)

4. Warren Buffett: $58.2 - Berkshire Hathaway (self-made)

5. Larry Ellison: $48bn - Oracle (self-made)

6. Charles Koch: $40bn - Diversified (inherited and growing)

7. David Koch: $40bn - Diversified (inherited and growing)

8. Sheldon Adelson: $38bn - Casinos (self-made)

9. Christy Walton & family: $36.7bn - Wal-Mart (inherited)

10. Jim Walton: $34.7bn - Wal-Mart (inherited)

11. Liliane Bettencourt and family: $34.5bn - L'Oreal (inherited)

12. Stefan Persson: $34.4bn - H&M (inherited and growing)

13. Alice Walton: $34.3bn - Wal-Mart (inherited)

14. S. Robson Walton: $34.2bn - Wal-Mart (inherited)

15. Bernard Arnault and family: $33.5bn - LVMH (inherited and growing)

16. Michael Bloomberg: $33bn - Bloomberg LP (self-made)

17. Larry Page: $32.3bn - Google (self-made)

18. Jeff Bezos: $32bn - (self-made)

19. Sergey Brin: $31.8bn - Google (self-made)

20. Li Ka-shing: $31bn - Diversified (self-made) Data from Forbes

Belfast Telegraph