Update (7/28): By the time the market closed on July 27, Jeff Bezos was no longer on top. However it is entirely likely he'll be trading blows with Gates for the weeks to come and Amazon's CEO will surge as the richest man on earth given Amazon's dominance in e-commerce.
Bezos has been a billionaire for over 20 years, but as one of Amazon's largest stockholders, his wealth surged to $90 billion this past week after the company's stock has rallied for the past three years from less than $200 to over $1,000.
Needless to say, there is little difference in lifestyle beyond a certain amount of wealth. Both executives could already spend $1 billion every single year for the remainder of their lives and still have plenty of money left over.
Today marks the first time since 2013 that someone other than Bill Gates will hold the exclusive title of world's richest. The steady increase in Prime subscribers, expanding sales to business customers, and web services all contributed to pushing stock prices up to help Bezos grow his net worth.
Overall, Amazon has had over 40% growth this year. As CEO, Bezos owns a 17% stake in the company, bringing him up from the fourth wealthiest at the beginning of the year now to the number one slot. Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerburg and Berkshire Hathaway Inc. chairman Warren Buffet are both vying for the position, but are nearly $20 billion short, ranking in the fourth and fifth positions.