Mexico's Carlos Slim remains the world's richest man for the fourth year in a row, according to Forbes, while Warren Buffett dropped out of the top three for the first time since 2000.
And Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg saw his ranking drop 31 spots as his net worth declined by US$4.2 billion.
A record 1,426 people around the world made Forbes magazine's latest annual count of billionaires, up 16 per cent from last year. Their average net worth was $3.8bn, rising 3 per cent from 2012. The total net worth for the list's billionaires was $5.4 trillion, compared with $4.6tn a year ago.
The US continued to be home to the most billionaires in the world, with 442 of them. It was followed by the Asia-Pacific region, with Europe rounding out the top three.
There were 210 new faces on the list, with Forbes saying many were helped by rebounding equity markets and strong consumer brands.
Slim's net worth increased to $73bn from $69bn a year earlier. Bill Gates of Microsoft held on to second place with a net worth of $67bn.
Berkshire Hathaway's Mr Buffett slipped to the fourth spot with a $53.5bn net worth. Mr Buffett was surpassed by Spanish clothier Amancio Ortega, who jumped two spots from 2012 with a net worth of $57bn.
While Mr Buffett dropped in the rankings, he added $9.5bn to his net worth - making him the second-biggest gainer of the year. The largest gainer was Mr Ortega, who added $19.5bn to his net worth.
There were 138 women on the list, up from 2012's 104. Liliane Bettencourt - whose family owns a stake in L'Oreal - is the world's richest woman with a net worth of $30bn.
Brazil's Eike Batista had the biggest drop in his net worth, with it declining $19.4bn from the previous year. Facebook's Mr Zuckerberg saw his net worth fall to $13.3bn from $17.5bn. His ranking fell to number 66 from number 35 in 2012.
There were 60 people that dropped off the list, including Zynga's Mark Pincus and former Chesapeake Energy chief executive Aubrey McClendon.