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Bill Gates crowned world's richest person, once again

The Microsoft co-founder unseats telecommunications tycoon Carlos Slim for the first time in four years.

Bill Gates is now the world's richest person.
Screenshot by Shara Tibken/CNET

It looks like telecommunications magnate Carlos Slim has lost his grip on the title of world's richest person.

And who to fill his shoes? None other than Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates.

With a $72.7 billion fortune, Gates is now $550 million ahead of Slim (who has a net worth of $72.1 billion), according to Bloomberg. This is the first time Gates has earned the biggest billionaire status since 2007.

Gates has seen his fortune grow about $10 billion over the past few months, according to Bloomberg. The increase came not so much from Microsoft stock -- only a quarter of Gate's fortune in invested in Microsoft -- but rather from other financial holdings and private investments.

While Gates has a $72.7 billion fortune, he has donated more than $28 billion to the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, which works on the eradication of polio, malaria, and other dangerous diseases.

Slim, on the other hand, has seen decreased wealth this year of about $2 billion, according to Bloomberg. The billionaire has been criticized by the Mexican government for running a monopoly with his America Movil telecommunications company.

The Mexican Congress is in the process of creating a law that would prohibit phone companies from owning more than 50 percent of the market. Currently, America Movil has 70 percent of Mexico's mobile market and 80 percent of the country's landlines, according to Bloomberg.

The richest person title has been a juggling match between Gates, Slim, and Berkshire Hathaway CEO Warren Buffett over the past several years. Other high-ranking billionaires include Oracle CEO Larry Ellison, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, and Google co-founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin.