With Mexican media baron Carlos Slim now the world's richest man, superseding Bill Gates, Mexican regulators are launching an investigation into whether the virtual monopolies that have made him worth $67 billion in a dizzyingly short time are illegal. Two of his companies—Telemex and Movil—control about 90% of the nation's landlines and 75% of wireless service, Time reports.
Overall, the son of Lebanese Christian immigrants owns a mind-blowing 8% of Mexico's GDP. The government has been notoriously lax with monopolistic business practices, but President Calderon has promised to crack down. Time notes that news of the federal scrutiny caused shares of Telemex to tumble; if the slide continues, Slim could soon find himself No. 2 to Gates again.
(Read more Carlos Slim stories.)