Financial horoscope: The richest signs in the world
Are you looking for a sign in the stars regarding your destiny? Well, good luck with that. But we can help you identify a dozen folks who have done pretty well, destiny-wise. As near as we can figure, here are the richest people in the world born under each astrological sign.
We used Forbes' latest on the world's richest people as a starting point, and other sources to match birthdates. We're sure you'll notice that we needed to get all the way down to the 62nd richest person in the world before we found all twelve signs. That's not because most of the very richest people were all born under just a few signs. It's at least partly because some of the richest folks are pretty private, and even modern search engines can't scour up their birthdates. (That and, well, a lot of the richest folks really were born under just a few signs.)
March 21 - April 19
First of all, Aries, Happy Birthday! Mukesh Ambani shares your sign, as he was born on April 19th, 1957. Mukesh is definitely richer than you, however, since he's the richest Aries on the planet. He's worth about U$43 billion, and in addition to being the richest Aries, he's the 5th richest guy, period. How did he get so rich? Well, he's very smart, well-educated, and hard-working. And having a dad who was a billionaire gave him that extra little helping hand. You may not have won the lucky sperm lottery like Mukesh, but that doesn't mean you can't achieve great things. Look at the world's second richest Aries, who came from a farm family, had dyslexia, and still turned himself into a billionaire: Ingvar Kamprad, founder of Ikea.
April 20 - May 20
Taurus, those bullish characteristics of yours can be harnessed for wild success. Consider the story of Mikhail Fridman, the 43-year-old self-made Russian billionaire. Born in the now-defunct U.S.S.R., it would have once been ridiculous to guess that Mikhail would one day be on the list of the world's richest people. Today, he owns diverse interests in oil, banking, and telecom that make him the world's 20th richest person - and the wealthiest Taurus alive - with an estimated net worth nearly US$21 billion. That's the power of combining opportunity with action. It's time to stampede toward your own great success, Taurus!
May 21 - June 20
The fourth richest person in the world is 57-year-old Lakshmi Mittal - and he's a Gemini. Lakshmi heads up the world's largest steel producer (ArcelorMittal), and is worth a handy US$45 billion. Not bad for a kid from humble Indian roots. Lakshmi watched his father build a fortune from nothing, and he later continued that tradition of success, building his inheritance into one of the world's largest industrial empires. He is now the wealthiest man in Europe, where he lives with his wife and two children. Get busy, Gemini. If you only do 0.1 percent as well as this guy, you'll still be worth US$4.5 million!
June 21 - July 22
Li Ka-Shing, 79, is Hong Kong's richest person, the 11th richest person in the world - and the richest living Cancer. Li Ka-Shing is worth about US$26.5 billion today, and he started out with nothing. Well, not nothing. He had the only things that really matter: a giant work ethic and a burning desire to be successful. Today, this over-achieving Cancer not only sits atop the list of the wealthiest people in the world, he's way up there on the philanthropy tote board too. It's Li Ka Shing's stated intent to divide his massive estate between his two sons and his charitable foundation, a move that will make him one of the world's biggest givers. That's a great example for any Cancer to applaud - and to follow!
July 23 - August 22
Real estate has been very, very good to KP Singh. Mr. Singh, 76, has a net worth of US$30 billion, making him the 8th richest person in the world, as well as the richest real estate tycoon. (Famously self-assured real estate mogul Donald Trump, a Gemini, doesn't even come remotely close, with a net worth only 1/10th the size.) And as long as we're looking at big swinging Leos, we should note that Larry Ellison of Oracle, with US$25 billion) a competitive Leo's Leo if there ever was one, must be pulling his hair out that he's now only the third richest Leo in the world with US$25 billion, behind both Singh and Comdex creator and casino mogul Sheldon Adelson (US$26 billion). Sure, a little competitive spirit can push you to great things. But it hurts to care too much.
August 23 - September 22
Virgo, the world's richest man shares your sign. And he's not just the world's richest man - he's probably your very favourite richest man. Yep, it's everyone's rich, wise uncle, Warren Buffett. Warren is the poster boy for value investing, and you and every other investor would do well to learn his lessons. For instance, is Warren afraid of the current market volatility? No. When prices decline dramatically, is he a seller? No. Does he get all weird and crazy when the markets do? No. He's a cool, calm, dispassionate purchaser of excellent businesses, and he only buys when the price makes sense. His discipline has made him the world's richest man, worth US$62 billion. And his virtue is making him one of history's largest philanthropists, as he's committed to giving away most of his great fortune. A Virgo, indeed.
September 23 - October 22
The world's richest woman is a Libra. Nope, it's not Oprah, who is neither a Libra, nor anywhere close to being this rich. It's 85-year-old Liliane Bettencourt, daughter of controversial L'Oreal founder Eugene Schueller. Liliane still has a controlling position in the cosmetics giant, making her the richest woman, the 17th richest person in the world, the second-richest person in France - and the very richest Libra. Oh, and we're just guessing, but we bet she also has really smooth skin and great hair.
October 23 - November 21
The richest Scorpio in the world today was also, for quite a few years, the world's richest person. But Microsoft shares have fallen in value since it took a run at Yahoo, and that's pushed the net worth of Harvard dropout Bill Gates, 52, all the way down to just US$58 billion. That means that the world's richest Scorpio is now only #3 on the net worth hit parade. This is probably not keeping him up nights, however, so you can let it go too. Bill is also better diversified than he has been in the past, with fully half of his wealth now outside of Microsoft stock. There's a lesson for you, Scorpio. Even Bill Gates doesn't put all his eggs in one basket anymore.
November 22 - December 21
Sagittarius, we don't want to say that your sign is rare amongst the world's richest people. That would be ridiculous. But we did have to get all the way down to number 62 on the list before we found some Sagittarian representation. Anne Cox Chambers, 88, inherited part of the media and entertainment estate of her father, James M. Cox, when he died in 1957. Today, her share is worth US$12.6 billion. That's enough to keep her in ermine and pearls, count her as one of the world's richest women, and make her the very richest Sagittarius.
December 22 - January 19
The biggest Capricorn on the mountain is Oleg Deripaska. You may not know much about Oleg...but you should. He's the 9th richest person on the planet. He's the richest man in Russia. He's self-made. He's only 40 years old. And he basically runs the metals sector in Russia. That, kids, is a Capricorn. Kickin' butt, taking names, and bringing home the bacon. No underachievement tendencies here. So...how you doin'? Not that we're comparing or anything. But it might be time to get your inner ram in gear, push yourself away from the computer, and go make things happen.
January 20 - February 18
The second-richest person on Spaceship Earth is an Aquarian. He's Carlos Slim Helu, 68, the Mexican telecom mogul. Carlos rings in at US$60 billion these days, thanks to the hot performance of the stock of his company, America Movil. But how much he has is not Helu's only claim to fame. In the last few years, he's given away nearly US$7 billion of his fortune. That's a great example for any Aquarian: It's not what you have that matters, but what you give to others.
February 19 - March 20
The richest person in France is also the world's richest Pisces: Bernard Arnault. Bernard's father was a successful industrialist, and Bernard parlayed his influence and inheritance into a world-class fortune. Today, Bernard controls luxury goods maker LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton, which has too many brands in its stable to list here. Doling out all that fabulous luxury has made Bernard fabulously, luxuriously rich. He's the 13th richest person in the world, with a net worth estimated at US$25.5 billion. All those luxury purchases you've been spoiling yourself with? You've really been spoiling Bernard, and he thanks you. Merci.
© 2008 John Caspar
John Caspar, CFP, FMA, FCSI is a Vice President and a Financial Advisor with Raymond James Ltd. The views of the author do not necessarily reflect those of Raymond James. This article is for information only. Raymond James Ltd. is a member of CIPF. John's web page is www.johncaspar.com