Bill Gates is once again the world’s richest person, thanks in large part to a slide over the past few days in the price of Mexican stocks. Gates bumps Mexican telecom mogul Carlos Slim from his perch as world’s richest, a post Slim has held for the past four years.The swap happened at the end of the trading day on Monday, after America Movil shares dropped 0.24% from Friday’s closing price. That tiny shift–one quarter of one percent–dragged the biggest part of Slim’s fortune down by $82.7 million. Meanwhile, Microsoft MSFT +0.34% shares rose 0.6%–yes, six tenths of one percent–from Friday’s closing price to Monday’s close, lifting this portion of Gates’ fortune by $88.4 million. With other holdings accounted for, Gates took the lead by just a hair, in billionaire terms: $140 million. Gates finished Monday’s trading with a fortune that Forbes estimates at $70 billion vs. Slim with $69.86 billion.
Slim’s fall from the top continued on Tuesday, when shares of America Movil sank another 1.55% by day’s end, dragging that piece of Slim’s fortune down by $529 million. The price of Microsoft dipped only slightly in Tuesday’s trading, 0.6%. That sent Gates’ stake in Microsoft down by $96.8 million. All in all, the gap between the billionaires’ fortunes widened to $504 million- real money for most of us, but not much to these two. Gates ended the day with a fortune we estimate at $69.9 billion vs. Slim with $69.4 billion.
The gap between their net worths continued to grow on Wednesday, to $624 million. Gates ended Wednesday’s trading day with a $69.8 billion fortune, Slim with a net worth of $69.1 billion.
For the 2013 World’s Billionaires List, Slim took the top spot with a net worth of $73 billion, while Gates came in at second richest with a net worth estimated at $67 billion.It isn’t just Slim’s America Movil that has been dropping lately. Shares in five companies in which he holds major stakes– among them Grupo Carso GPOOY +% S.A.B. de C.V., Grupo Financiero Inbursa, Minera Frisco MSNFY +%, Impulsora del Desarrollo y el Empleo, and Inmuebles Carso–were all down from Friday’s market close to Tuesday’s close.