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S. Korea's Lee Kun-Hee & Jay Y Lee Take No. 35
Putin Tops Forbes' 2014 Ranking of World's Most Powerful People for 2nd Year in a Row
US President Barack Obama Remains at No. 2 Spot
Putin as Action Man: Russian President Vladimir Putin has made his image as a strong leader through his tough sports activities. He is a race car driver and he is a blackbelt in judo. Putin has piloted firefighting planes, darted whales, driven race cars, and taken a submersible 1,400 meters below the surface of Lake Baikal.

NEW YORK (Nov. 5, 2014) – Russian President Vladimir Putin (No. 1) takes the top spot out of 72 on Forbes’ sixth annual ranking of “The World’s 72 Most Powerful People” (p. 98 of the November 24, 2014 Forbes magazine issue) for the second year in a row.

In 2014, the Russian President flexed his muscles on the world stage by annexing Crimea, staging a proxy war in the Ukraineand inking a deal to build a more than $70 billion gas pipeline with China (the planet’s largest construction project).

The top 5 positions are unchanged from last year, with President Barack Obama (No. 2) remaining in second place ahead of General Secretary, Communist Party of China’s Xi Jinping (No. 3), Pope Francis (No.4) and German Chancellor Angela Merkel (No. 5).

Rounding out the Top 10 are Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen (No. 6), Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Co-chair Bill Gates (No.7), European Central Bank President Mario Draghi (No. 8), Google cofounders Larry Page and Sergey Brin (No. 9), and UK Prime Minister David Cameron (No. 10). Saudi Arabia King Abdullah bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud drops three spots to number 11, Ben Bernanke and former Wal-Mart CEO Michael Duke fall off of this year’s list.

Among the 12 newcomers to this year’s list are Prime Minister of India Narendra Modi (No. 15), Wal-Mart CEO Doug McMillon (No. 29), Alibaba CEO Jack Ma (No. 30), Gazprom Chair Alexey Miller (No. 47), President of Egypt Abdel el-Sisi (No. 51), Tencent CEO Ma Huateng (No. 53), ISIS “Caliph” Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi (No. 54), billionaire Len Blavatnik (No. 56), General Motors CEO Mary Barra (No. 62), Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella (No. 64), Hancock Prospecting Group Chair Gina Rinehart (No. 66) and Doubleline Capital CEO Jeffrey Gundlach (No. 69).

Google cofounders Larry Page and Sergey Brin (No. 9) move up the list from No. 17 last year, and are the highest ranking active business people on the list. Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen (No. 6) rises from No. 72 last year after her confirmation as Federal Reserve Chair in January 2014.

Thirty-six percent are billionaires, with their combined net worth in excess of $790 billion. Six people share three of the 26 billionaire spots on the list: Larry Page and Sergey Brin (No. 9), Charles Koch and David Koch (No.24), and Lee Kun-Hee and Jay Y. Lee (No. 35), bringing the total number to 29 billionaires on the list.Six of the Most Powerful are from China, three are from India, two are from Hong Kong, and one is from Taiwan.

Nine out of the 72 are women, which is the same number as last year; Mary Barra (No. 62) and Gina Rinehart (No. 66) are newcomers to the list while Jill Abramson and Sonia Gandhi fall off the list this year. Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg (No. 22) and North Korea Supreme Leader Kim Jong-un (No. 49) are the youngest on the list, at ages 30 and 31, respectfully.

Twenty-six are from the US. Several factors were taken into account to select the 72 people that matter from the 7.2 billion people on the planet: the amountof money they control; the number of people they impact; their total spheres of influence; and how actively they wield their power. For the full list, complete methodology and associated features, visit:

For these stories and more, visit Follow Forbes on Twitter ( Wendy Furrer Egan at or 212-366-8848

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