NEW YORK, Nov 20 (Reuters Life!) - Move over Santa. The red-clad philanthropist has lost the top slot on Forbes magazines’ list of the 15 richest fictional characters to defense contractor Oliver “Daddy” Warbucks.
Warbucks, a lieutenant general in the comic strip Little Orphan Annie, unseats Santa from the top position for the first time with an estimated net worth of $36.2 billion with the conflict in Iraq boosting his fortune.
“We still estimate Claus’ net worth as infinite, but we excluded him from this year’s rankings after being bombarded by letters from outraged children insisting that Claus is ‘real’,” according to a statement from Forbes.com.
Forbes.com said it took into account “the physical evidence - toys delivered, milk and cookies devoured” in removing him from consideration.
Other drop-offs include Ebenezer Scrooge, who gave much of his fortune to the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation; Superman nemesis Lex Luther, who blew billions trying to take over the world; and Cruella De Vil as demand for fur coats plummeted.
The new annual list with an aggregate fictional net worth of $111 billion includes Mr. Monopoly, spam entrepreneur Prince Abakaliki of Nigeria, and videogame plumber Mario.
Second place goes to Charles Montgomery Burns, owner of the Springfield nuclear power plant in the cartoon TV show “The Simpsons” worth an estimated $16.8 billion after announcing a “technology exchange” with North Korean leader Kim Jong II.
Scrooge McDuck came in third with an estimated $10.9 billion from mining and treasure hunting as gold prices soared.
How did Forbes calculate their worth? When possible on known commodity and share price movements or by comparing private businesses to comparable fictional public companies plus a “tiny grain of common sense and a large dose of salt.”