Amazon founder Jeff Bezos closing in on Bill Gates as world's richest man
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Jeff Bezos is just $5 billion away from becoming the richest man in the world thanks to a surge in Amazon (NASDAQ: AMZN) shares in after hours trading.

Amazon shares put on almost $50 after the online retailer forecast sales above analysts' estimates for the current quarter.

The news lifted the stock as high as $965 after it closed yesterday at $918.38.

Amazon founder Jeff Bezos overtakes Buffett to become second richest person in the world

The surge carried the net worth of Amazon founder Bezos to $79 billion and it could surpass $80 billion for the first time if Amazon keeps the gains when markets open today.

Bezos only recently climbed to the second position on Bloomberg's Billionaires Index after an earlier jump in the Amazon share price following the company's announcement that it had acquired Middle Eastern e-commerce firm Souq.

Bezos leapfrogged Zara founder Amancio Ortega and Warren Buffett with his fortune late last month priced at $75.6 billion.

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Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) co-founder Bill Gates has held the top spot on the Bloomberg index since May 17, 2013.

His fortune slipped $200 million to $87.1 billion after hours as Microsoft presented mixed results and slowing tablet sales growth.

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