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List of Richest People 2009

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forbes billionaire list
Forbes Billionaires List 2009
Review of the world's billionaires according to the Forbes business magazine, 2009.
Includes a listing of the richest people in the world.

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The Richest people in the world Forbes Rich List - World's Billionaires in 2009

On March 11, 2009, Forbes released it's most recent list of the world's wealthiest people. The annual list of billionaires shrank from 1125 in 2008 to 793 in 2009. Furthermore, the average net worth of the billionaires on the list dropped 23% over the previous 12 months to $3 billion per individual.

Americans dominated the billionaire list this year, carrying 45% of the list's slots and holding 44% of the wealth on the Forbes list. Economic declines in the last part of 2008 are partially to blame for the decline in both wealth and number of billionaires on the March list with some individuals losing 50% or more of their net worth over the last 12 months. Overall, the collective net worth of the richest people is estimated around $2.4 trillion, a whole $2 trillion lower than last year's list.

The top two slots remained the same as previous years, although the two top billionaires did switch positions from last year's list. Microsoft founder Bill Gates regained the #1 position followed closely by Berkshire Hathaway founder Warren Buffett, last year's leader, in the second slot. Bill Gates was estimated to have a net worth of $40 billion, down $18 billion from last year's list. Warren Buffett, last year's top billionaire, lost approximately $25 billion in net worth to end at $37 billion for this year's list. The number three spot went to Carlos Slim Helu, the Mexican telecom mogul, who lost $25 billion to end with a net worth of $35 billion.

The remaining top ten spots on the 2009 Forbes billionaire list went to Lawrence Ellison, Ingvar Kamprad, Karl Albrecht, Mukesh Ambani, Lakshmi Mittal, Theo Albrecht, and Amancio Ortega respectively. Members of the Walton family, heirs to the Walmart chain of stores, remained on the list in positions eleven through fourteen.

Almost all of the billionaires on the list lost money over the previous year. India's Anil Ambani, head of Reliance Communications, was the biggest loser with a total loss of 76% of his fortune equalling $32 billion. Ambani did stay on the billionaire list, however, unlike 29 other Indian business owners who disappeared from this year's list. 24 Indian billionaires remained on the list, however, but most of them lost large percentages of wealth over the course of 2008.

Much like India, Russia lost most if its billionaires during 2008, too. 55 Russian billionaires dropped off this year's list, two-thirds of the number that were on the Forbes billionaire list last year. Among the lost wealth was Vasily Anisimov whose fortune plummeted with the value of Metalloinvest Holding. His daughter, Anna Anisimova, is known for being the "Paris Hilton" of Russia.

Some of the billionaires from Forbes 2008 list lost almost all of their fortune. Among them was AIG head Maurice Greenberg and former Citigroup Chairman Sandy Weill, both of whom lost most of their wealth after their respective bank failures and government bailouts.

Despite massive loss of wealth, there were a few individuals that flourished in 2008. Joaquin Guzman Loera, a cocaine supplier, Wang Chuanfu, whose company began selling electric cars in late 2008, and John Paul Dejoria, founder of Paul Mitchell and Patron Tequila, all prospered over the last twelve months, showing the rest of the world that there is still hope in finding worthy investments in a failing global economy.

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top 10 rich list Richest Top 10

Top Ten richest billionaires in the world according to the Forbes business magazine in 2009.
(All figures in American Dollars)

1. Bill Gates, $40 billion (Richest American)
2. Warren Buffett, $37 billion (American billionaires)
3. Carlos Slim Helu, $35 billion (Richest Mexican)
4. Lawrence Ellison, $22.5 billion (American billionaire)
5. Ingvar Kamprad, $22 billion (Richest Swedish man)
6. Karl Albrecht, $21.5 billion (Richest German)
7. Mukesh Ambani, $19.5 billion (Richest Indian)
8. Lakshmi Mittal, $19.3 billion (Indian Billionaire)
9. Theo Albrecht, $18.8 billion (German billionaire)
10. Amancio Ortega, $18.3 billion (Richest Spanish man)

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