Forbes released its annual list of the world’s top moneymakers. Among them are a number of billionaires who made their vast fortunes through investing or working in the financial industry. Many of them are some of the world’s most famous, while others are the wealthiest men in their own nations.
Rupert Johnson, Jr. with a net worth of $6.2 billion, is vice chairman and director of Franklin Resources, the parent of Franklin Templeton. The business originated with his father, Rupert Johnson, Sr. who founded Franklin Distributors in 1947.29. Suleyman Kerimov
Russian investor Suleyman Kerimov, worth an estimated $6.9 billion, made his way from earning less than $300 a month as an accountant to leading the same firm’s financial department after mastering his own investments.
28. Eli Broad
Eli Broad, also worth $6.9 billion, was once the youngest person within his home state of Michigan to receive credentials as a CPA. Years later he became co-founder of homebuilding giant KB Home.
27. Graeme Hart
New Zealand’s Graeme Hart is reported as the wealthiest man in the country, with a worth of $7 billion. Hart once worked as a tow-truck driver before developing into the owner of private investment firm Rank Group Ltd which owns Burns Philp, Reynolds Consumer Products and Carter Holt Harvey.
26. Vincent Bolloré
French businessman Vincent Bolloré began as an investment banking trainee at Edmond de Rothschild. He took over investing for his family owned business, Bolloré, to earn his $7.4 billion fortune.
25. Charles Johnson
Charles Johnson, with a net worth of $7.5 billion, is half-brother to billionaire Rupert Johnson, Jr. Charles served as chairman of Franklin Resources before his son took over.
24. Tsai Wan-Tsai
Taiwanese Tsai Wan-Tsai, worth approximately $7.6 billion, comes from a family of active investors in the country’s finance industry. His sons are in charge of Fubon Financial Holdings, with $151 billion in assets.
23. R. Budi Hartono
As the richest man in Indonesia, R. Budi Hartono owns Djarum, one of the world’s largest cigarette manufacturers. With his brother, fellow billionaire Michael Bambang Hartono, he shares stake in Bank Central Asia.
22. August von Finck, Jr.
August von Finck’s investments have included everything from real estate to industrial companies. His $8.3 billion worth is a result of this diversification, fueled by sales of his grandfather’s bank Merck, Finck & Co.
21. Ludwig Merckle
After his father Adolf Merckle passed away in 2009, Ludwig took over his empire and inherited a net worth of $8.6 billion earned from the family’s pharmaceutical companies.
20. Thomas Peterffy
Born in Hungary, Thomas Peterffy made his $8.8 billion by transforming his career as a computer programmer and engineer into a financial trader. He purchased his own seat on the American Stock Exchange and played a pivotal part in electronic trading of securities.
19. Edward Johnson, III
As chairman and CEO of Fidelity Investments, Edward Johnson, III, worth $9.3 billion, leads the second largest mutual fund company in the United States. He ran the company’s well-known Magellan Fund after joining in 1957.
18. David Tepper
Hedge fund manager David Tepper is the founder of Appaloosa Management. His methods have led to his being viewed as the standard for which hedge fund managers should operate, in addition to earning his $10 billion wealth.
17. Stephen Schwarzman
Stephen Schwarzman, worth an estimated $10 billion, is the chairman and CEO of the Blackstone Group. He formed the equity firm in 1985 with former Secretary of Commerce Pete Peterson.
16. Philip Anschutz
Philip Anschutz earned his $10.4 billion wealth after buying out his father’s drilling company. He used returns gained to invest in stocks, railways, real estate and entertainment. He is a co-founder of Major League Soccer.
15. Mikhail Prokhorov
Russian Mikhail Prokhorov has taken on a number of roles en route to his $10.9 billion fortune. These include banker, athlete, investor, NBA owner and even politician as he jumped into the 2012 Russian presidential race against Vladimir Putin.
14. Andrew Beal
Banker Andrew Beal built his $10.9 billion wealth in real estate and banking. He is the founder and chairman of Beal Bank and is known for the mathematical theory known as the Beal conjecture.
13. Petr Kellner
With a net worth of $11 billion, Petr Kellner started his career selling office supplies. He borrowed $1 million against the business to start an investment fund to buy a major stake in the largest insurance company in the Czech Republic.
12. Steve Cohen
Hedge fund manager Steve Cohen started as a junior trader at Gruntal & Co. Worth $11 billion, he acquired his wealth as the founder of SAC Capital Advisors.
11. James Simons
An accomplished mathematician and theoretical physicist, James Simons amassed his $12.5 billion fortune as hedge fund manager of Renaissance Technologies. His company uses mathematical models to execute trades.
10. John Paulson
Before becoming a finance legend, John Paulson once sold children’s clothing from Ecuador to the United States with his father. His $13.5 billion fortune began when he bet against the US housing market in what is referred to as “the greatest trade ever.”
9. Ronald Perelman
Ronald Perelman was always an accomplished businessman, owning American Paper Products and Belmont Industries. As chairman and CEO of MacAndrews & Forbes Holdings Inc. he invests in companies with strong brands, garnering $14 billion along the way.
8. Luis Carlos Sarmiento
Colombian Luis Carlos Sarmiento earned his fortune in the construction industry. He achieved his $14.2 billion wealth after investing in banks. His company Grupo Aval controls a third of all banking in Colombia.
7. Ray Dalio
With a net worth of $14.4 billion, Ray Dalio is head of the world’s largest hedge fund firm, Bridgewater Associates. Once placed on Time’s “100 Most Influential People” list, this businessman began investing at the age of 12.
6. Joseph Safra
Joseph Safra’s family history in banking goes as far back as caravan trades in the Ottoman Empire. With a net worth of $16 billion, he is chairman of banking empire Safra Group.
5. Prince Al-Waleed bin Talal al Saud
As the founder and CEO of Kingdom Holding Company, Prince Al-Waleed bin Talal al Saud has an estimated worth of $20.4 billion, though he claims it to be higher. Arabian Business estimated the actual figure to be over $30 billion along with granting him the title of the Most Influential Arab in the World.
4. George Soros
Worth $23 billion, George Soros is the founder of Soros Fund Management. As a struggling college student, Soros had to beg for his first financial position at Singer & Friedlander.
3. Carl Icahn
Carl Icahn has held powerful positions within numerous major corporations and has used his ruthless tactics to amass a fortune of $24.5 billion. He is the majority shareholder in Icahn Enterprises.
2. Michael Bloomberg
Former New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg is noted as the eleventh richest person in the United States, with a wealth of $33 billion. He is the founder of Bloomberg LP known for its famous Bloomberg Terminals.
1. Warren Buffett
Warren Buffett made his first investment at the New York Stock Exchange when he was only 11 years old. This longtime legend investor is worth $58.2 billion, despite annual salaries of just six figures.
Share these names with fellow investors to see how many you’ve come to know so far. While many of the world’s top investors continue to see success, the atmosphere is always unpredictable, and names fall off and appear each year. Do you feel you or one of your colleague or boss have the chance to make it on this list in the coming years? Let us know.