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The world's top billionaires

By Shannon Jones:

Wealth of world’s billionaires soars amid stock market surge

22 March 2017

The ranks of the world’s billionaires registered a sharp increase in 2016, with the number rising by 233 to reach a record 2,043, according to Forbes magazine’s annual survey. This was the first time that the Forbes list of the world’s richest has included more than 2,000 individuals.

The combined wealth of those on Forbes’ billionaires list rose 18 percent to $7.67 trillion, a staggering sum, more than the gross domestic product of all but the wealthiest of the world’s countries. The immediate impetus for the rise are surging stock prices, which have reached record levels since the election of US president Donald Trump, and the rising price of oil over the past 12 months.

More fundamentally, the increasing concentration of wealth among the world’s richest represents a social retrogression in which…

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