You’ve probably heard the saying about how earning your first million dollars is the hardest and after that, the money comes easy. Bill Gates is a perfect example of that as his fortune continues to swell, even after he has given a large chunk of it away through charity and philanthropy.
Gates once again sits atop Forbes' annual rich list with a net worth of $79.2 billion, up from just $76 billion a year ago. This is the second consecutive year that Gates has earned the honor; he has topped the list 16 of the last 21 years.
Mexican telecommunications mogul Carlos Slim Helu, who last held the top position in 2013, finished in second place with $77.1 billion followed by investor Warren Buffet at $72.7 billion.
Silicon Valley turned out 23 new billionaires during 2014 including the founders of Airbnb, Snapchat and Uber. Snapchat CEO Evan Spiegel is now the world’s youngest billionaire at the age of 24 with a net worth of $1.5 billion.
In total, there were 1,826 billionaires on the list – all but 197 were men. The highest ranked woman on the list is Christy Walton, the widow of John Walton, a son of Wal-Mart founder Sam Walton. She has a net worth of $41.7 billion.
Interestingly enough, basketball icon Michael Jordan only joined the billionaire club this year thanks largely in part to his ownership of the Charlotte Hornets and royalties from Nike.
The billionaires' combined wealth totals $7.05 trillion, up from $6.4 trillion a year ago.