Gates, the Microsoft co-founder who held sway atop the wealth list for 13 years, slipped to No. 3 behind Buffet and Mexican telecommunications businessman Carlos Slim Helu, whose wealth has doubled in just two years, Forbes said. Helu is estimated to have a net worth of $60 billion, while Gates is now said to be worth $58 billion.
Buffet, 77, saw his fortune pile up another $10 billion in the past year, thanks to the increased value of Berkshire Hathaway stock. He had no comment on his financial status, Forbes reported.
Gates might still have ruled the roost had Microsoft not made a bid for Yahoo! last month, which triggered a 15 percent drop Microsoft's value.