Every year Forbes scans America’s largest fortunes to determine the wealthiest person in every state. This year’s list is a lesson in “the rich get richer.” All but one person on the 2017 ranking also made last year’s ranking — but these state-leading tycoons saw their fortunes rise by $1.74 billion on average.
In all, we recorded 52 people (there were ties in two states) worth an aggregate $747 billion — up from $682 billion last year. Nearly 70% of them, or 36 people, are wealthier than last year; only 12 saw a decline in the value of their net worth. Their fortunes average $14.4 billion, up from $12.6 billion in 2016.
They made their money in industries as varied as the states they call home. The most popular industries for minting a state-leading fortune: fashion & retail, and finance & investments. These sectors each claim 8 list members. Next up is food & beverage, with 5, followed by a three-way tie between manufacturing, media & entertainment, and technology, with 4 apiece.
The biggest gainer in sheer dollars is Bill Gates. He added $12.9 billion to his fortune since last year as the rising stock market has boosted his portfolio, which includes Microsoft and a number of other public and private investments. Gates’ spot on this list might seem to be sure a bet, but the richest person in Washington state — and the world — is actually in danger of losing both titles.
Full story at Forbes