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Merkel, Obama, Clinton, Gates: here’s who topped the list of most powerful women

The Forbes list of the world’s most powerful women ranks them by money, media presence and impact. Here’s who’s in.

Michelle Obama and Hillary Clinton
Michelle Obama and Hillary Clinton
Image: AP Photo/Charles Dharapak

GERMAN CHANCELLOR ANGELA Merkel has topped Forbes’s list of the world’s most powerful women for the third consecutive year, followed by Brazil’s Dilma Rousseff.

They were followed by Melinda Gates – who co-chairs the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation with her billionaire philanthropist husband – US First Lady Michelle Obama and former US secretary of state Hillary Clinton.

The annual list includes influential women in global politics, business, media, entertainment, technology and non-profits — ranking them by “money, media presence and impact,” according to the business magazine.

“The rise of personal brands and entrepreneurial endeavors among this year’s Power Women are exciting trends as we mark our 10th year of publishing the list,” said Moira Forbes, president and publisher of ForbesWoman.

“From Singapore to Saudi Arabia, the United Kingdom to the United States — and beyond — the 100 influential women on our list are making an indelible and lasting impact on the world we live in,” she said in a statement.

Forbes has named Merkel the most powerful woman eight out of the 10 years the list has existed.

High-ranking businesswomen on the list include Hewlett-Packard CEO Meg Whitman (No. 15) — subject of the Forbes cover story — as well as Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg (No. 6) and Yahoo! CEO Marissa Mayer (No. 32).

The 24 CEOs on the list lead firms with a combined $893 billion (almost €700 billion)  in 2012 revenues, while the eight heads of state run countries with a combined GDP of $9.9 trillion (€7.6 trillion) the magazine said.

In another measure of influence, the 100 women on the 2013 list have a combined Twitter following of over 153 million, Forbes said.

- © AFP, 2013

Read: Women ‘cannot stand for president of Iran’ >

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