Following Merkel is US presidential candidate and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.
United States Federal Reserve Chair and American economist Janet Yellen and billionaire Melinda Gates are the world’s third and fourth most powerful women, respectively.
Last year, Gates was in third place while Yellen was in the fourth spot.
Rounding up the top 10 are General Motors CEO Mary Barra, International Monetary Fund Managing Director Christine Lagarde, Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg, YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki, HP CEO Meg Whitman, and Santander Group CEO Ana Patricia Botin.
For this year, Forbes did not include women from the entertainment industry into consideration, “making room for a wide inclusion of female leaders across the globe who have been elected to office.”
This year’s ranking thus represents women from seven categories: billionaires, business, finance, media, politics, philanthropists and nongovernment organizations, and technology.