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By Cheryl Kahla

Content Strategist

Forbes 400: US billionaires richer than before, but not Trump

While ordinary citizens the world over struggle to survive the pandemic, the rich are getting richer.

A worldwide pandemic cannot even stop America’s richest from getting richer, if the billionaires who made it onto the Forbes 400 2021 list are anything to go by. Donald Trump, however, didn’t make the cut.

The 40th annual Forbes 400 report shows that the collective fortune of billionaires in the United States increased by 40% over the last year, adding up to a whopping $4.5 trillion.

“Nearly all are richer than they were a year ago. The top 20 on the list are together worth a stunning $1.8 trillion,” Kerry A. Dolan writes.

Forbes400: Who made the cut?

To absolutely no one’s surprise, Amazon founder Jeff Bezos made it to the top of the list. It’s a constant head-to-head between South Africa-born Elon Musk and Bezos.

Bezos versus Musk

Musk briefly overtook Bezos as the world’s richest person on 28 September after Tesla shares (TSLA) continued a four-month rally.

However, Amazon is now worth $201 billion – up by $22 billion from 2020 – meaning Bezos is once again in the lead. Which horse billionaire are you betting on?

“This marks the first time anyone on the Forbes 400 has been worth $200 billion or more,” Dolan says.

Despite Bezos’ latest wealth spike, Musk’s network increased threefold since 2020; he now has a net worth of $190.5 billion.

Zuckerberg and Gates

Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg is in the third spot after FB stock increased by 63%, which leaves Bill Gates in fourth, the lowest he’s ever been in three decades.

Gates had to transfer approximately $5.7 billion worth of Deere & Co and Canadian Railway stock following his divorce from Melinda French Gates in May 2021.

That also means Melinda entered the game for the first time, at 158th with an estimated net worth of $6.3 billion. 

Where’s Donald Trump?

While a flock of young entrepreneurs made it onto the list for the first time this year, some of the die-hard billionaires weren’t as lucky, including the former US president.

It’s the first time in 25 years that Trump doesn’t appear on the list, with an estimated net worth of $2.5 billion.

The cut-off point increased from $2.1 billion to $2.9 billion, meaning 51 billionaires dropped off the list, including Oprah Winfrey, Brad Kelley and Timothy Boyle.

ALSO READ: Elon Musk becomes richest person in the world again, eclipsing space foe Bezos

The Top 20 richest in America

forbes400 billionaires
Photo: Forbes
NameSourceNet worth 2021Up from (2020)
Jeff BezosAmazon$201 billion$179 billion
Elon MuskTesla, SpaceX$190 billion$68 billion
Mark ZuckerbergFacebook$134.5 billion$85 billion
Bill GatesMicrosoft$134 billion$111 billion
Larry PageGoogle$123 billion$67.5 billion
Sergey BrinGoogle$118.5 billion$65.7 billion
Larry EllisonSoftware$117.3 billion$72 billion
Warren BuffetBerkshire Hathaway$102 billion$73.5 billion
Steve BallmerMicrosoft$96.5 billion$69 billion
Michael BloombergBloomberg LP$70 billion$55 billion
Jim WaltonWalmart$68.8 billion$62.1 billion
Alice WaltonWalmart $67.9 billion$62.3 billion
Rob WaltonWalmart $67.6 billion$61.8 billion
Phil Knight & familyNike$59.9 billion$39.2 billion
MacKenzie ScottAmazon$58.5 billion$57 billion
Charles KochKoch Industries$51 billion$45 billion
Julia Koch & familyKoch Industries$51 billion $45 billion
Michael DellDell computers$50.1 billion$35.6 billion
Stephen SchwarzmanBlackstone Investments$37.4 billion$19.1 billion
Len BlavatnikMusic, chemicals$36.7 billion$25 billion

The complete list can be viewed here.

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