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Forbes list Swiss billionaires punch above their weight

Two of Switzerland's richest, Ernesto Bertarelli, left, and Hansjörg Wyss, seen in 2015 teaming up for a major biotech project in Geneva

(swissinfo.ch)

Switzerland can claim 30 billionaires who are collectively worth $91.6 billion (CHF91.46 billion), according to the Forbes' annual list of the world's richest people.

The list released on Wednesday puts $6.48 trillion in the hands of 1,810 people whose personal worth runs to 10 figures.

That is down from 1,826 billionaires who were collectively worth $7.05 trillion a year earlier.

Swiss businessman Ernesto Bertarelli, the former owner of biotech firm Serono, topped the Swiss rankings with $8.6 billion. He is ranked the 129th wealthiest billionaire in the world.

The next wealthiest Swiss is Margarita Louis-Dreyfus, who controls one of the world’s largest agricultural trading houses. She has $6.8 billion, making her the world’s 171st wealthiest.

Next is Hansjörg Wyss, who made part of his fortune selling artificial joint maker Synthes for over $21 billion. He is worth $6.1 billion, and is ranked 196th in the world.

US tops the list

Globally, Microsoft founder Bill Gates held onto the top spot as the world's richest person with an estimated $75 billion net worth.

Collectively, the United States far outpaced the rest of the world with 540 billionaires collectively worth $2.399 trillion.

Second is mainland China, which has 251 billionaires with $593 billion. That figure doesn’t include Hong Kong or Taiwan.

Third is Germany, which has 120 billionaires with $469.1 billion.

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