Bill Gates is again the world's richest person, despite massive donations to worthy causes
Bill Gates is donating his vast fortune in huge billion-dollar chunks, but even this prodigious rate of giving is still not enough to stop Mircosoft's founder from being named the richest person in the world.
Gates' reported worth was tagged at a staggering $76 billion, up from $67 billion in 2013, which effectively knocked Mexico's Carlos Slim from the top spot. Gates has held the top spot for 15 of the last 20 years.
Gates, who has already donated in excess of $26 billion, is once again the richest person on the planet, according to Forbes Magazine's annual report on the richest people in the world. Gates has declared that he intends to eventually give away all of his vast fortune, but right now the amount coming in still surpasses his very generous charitable givings.
"I'm certainly well taken care of in terms of food and clothes," he said. "Money has no utility to me beyond a certain point. Its utility is entirely in building an organization and getting the resources out to the poorest in the world."
Gates may find it even harder to give away his wealth as he recently said he will start devoting more time to his old company. So if he helps Microsoft earn more his own net worth will rise.
The majority of the donations are distributed through the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. While the money is spread among a variety of causes as the Gates focus on eliminating disease and helping children's causes.
The Forbes' list was jam-packed with rich folk. This year there are 1,645 billionaires in the world and it now takes a nest egg of $31 billion to even make it into the top 20 of the list. Together all the billionaires are worth an estimated $6.4 trillion, up from $5.4 trillion last year.
Some other notable achievements went to Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, who saw his personal fortune more than double to $28.5 billion. Facebook even helped add two new members to the billionaires club. When the social media giant bought WhatsApp for $19 billion that company's founders Jan Koum and Brian Acton became billionaires.
The tech world has helped created dozens of billionaires. Larry Ellison, CEO of Oracle is listed at $48 billion, Google's Larry Page has $32.3 billion stashed away and Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos is right behind at $32 billion.
The United States continues to lead the world in the number of overall billionaires with 492, while Europe was a close second with 468 and Asia had 444.