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Mining magnate Gina Rinehart has once again been crowned Australia’s richest person, as a boom in iron ore prices lifted her personal net wealth to $34 billion.

Rinehart topped the Financial Review Rich List for the third consecutive year, which saw the richest 200 Australians drive their collective wealth past half a trillion dollars to $555 billion.

Of the top 200 richest, a staggering 137 are now considered billionaires – including the youngest ever rich-lister 25-year-old Robert Ferguson who built a cryptocurrency and gaming platform with his brother James.

Australia’s top 10 richest people of 2022 revealed

A full list of the top 10 richest Australians can be viewed at the bottom of the article.

The biggest winners were those operating in iron ore, property and technology, with the overall wealth of the top 10 richest people accounting for 40 per cent of the entire Rich List.

Rich List co-editor Julie-anne Sprague said this year’s list proved there was opportunity for younger – and older – Australians to make obscene amounts of cash.

“This year’s Rich List has the widest gap between the nation’s youngest and oldest entrepreneurs, proving age is no barrier to wealth creation. Of the 13 new people joining the list, seven are aged 40 or under,” she said.

“There are some notable departures this year as rising inflation and interest rates resets investor appetite for growth stocks. Some bigger names to fall off the list include Zip Co’s Larry Diamond who’s wealth has plunged from $598 million to less than $70 million over the past year.

“As some fortunes fall, others rebound. Flight Centre’s Graham Turner and wife Judy Turner, who operates their Spices Retreats, rejoin the list after a two-year hiatus.”

(From left):Gina Rinehart, Mike Cannon-Brookes and Scott Farquhar all find themselves once again in the top 10. (Nine)

There was also movements within the top 10 over the past 12 months.

Andrew “Twiggy” Forrest came in at number two, as iron ore prices lifted his personal wealth to $30.72 billion. 

He was followed by the tech gurus in Mike Cannon-Brookes ($27.83 billion) and Scott Farquahr ($26.41 billion) while cardboard king Anthony Pratt was named the country’s fourth richest with a personal wealth of $24.3 billion.

Despite spending approximately $100 million on the 2022 federal election, Clive Palmer also made a strong presence in the list, coming in at number seven with a personal wealth of $19.55 billion.

An iron ore truck stirs up the dirt as it drives through Eastern Ridge mine (Ethel Gorge) in Newman, Western Australia.
A boom in iron ore prices has lifted the personal wealth of everybody with a mining connection on the Rich List. (Krystle Wright)

Palmer’s wealth largely stems from a lucrative royalties deal which Chinese mining giant CITIC in 2006, which was also floated on the tide of soaring iron ore prices.

Rich List co-editor Michael Bailey said an interesting facet of this year’s list was the recent stratospheric growth of technology stocks, that then saw their fortunes reverse in just a matter of weeks.

“It’s been fascinating to watch the Rich List rollercoaster ride this year, with fortunes based on software growing exponentially then falling just as dramatically as the Rich List was being finalised,” he said. 

“Technologists have joined the miners as a new source of volatility on the list.”

Billionaire mining magnate and UAP chairman Clive Palmer has said he plans to spend about $70 million on the coming Federal election campaign.
Clive Palmer is the seventh richest man in the country, thanks largely to mining deals made with China. (SMH / Alex Ellinghausen)

 Australia’s top 10 richest people*

1. Gina Rinehart – $34.02 billion (up from $31.06 billion) – Resources, Agriculture 

2. Andrew Forrest – $30.72 billion (up from $27.25 billion) – Resources 

3. Mike Cannon-Brookes – $27.83 billion (up from $20.18 billion) – Technology 

4. Scott Farquhar – $26.41 billion (up from $20 billion) – Technology 

5. Anthony Pratt & family – $24.30 billion (up from $20.09 billion) – Manufacturing 

6. Harry Triguboff – $21.25 billion (up from $17.27 billion) – Property 

7. Clive Palmer – $19.55 billion (up from $13.01 billion) – Resources 

8. Melanie Perkins and Cliff Obrecht – $13.80 billion (up from $7.98 billion) – Technology 

9. Ivan Glasenberg – $12.20 billion (up from $7.39 billion) – Resources

10. Frank Lowy – $9.27 billion (up from $8.51 billion) – Property

*The Financial Review Rich List 2022

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