Russian Billionaires vs. American Billionaires: Who's Best at Excess?

Billionaires
Billionaires

In the late 1980's, the Great Recession was far in the future, Gordon Gekko was in theaters, and Wall Street's movers and shakers were some of America's greatest heroes. Meanwhile, on the other side of the world, the Soviet Union was a grim, cold wasteland filled with long lines and cabbage-based cuisine. Everybody wanted to be in finance and nobody wanted to be in Moscow.

What a difference a few decades make.

Today, things seem to be flipping. Spearheaded by John Thain, Dick Fuld and Angelo Mozilo, Wall Street's money men have become America's go-to villains, while Russia's crop of ambitious young billionaires have captured the public's imagination -- and some of the world's most coveted trophies.

But how do Russia's billionaires stack up against America's home grown oligarchs? To find out, we took a peek at some of the richest men in the world -- on both sides of the Arctic Ocean.

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Bruce Watson is a senior features writer for DailyFinance. You can reach him by e-mail at bruce.watson@teamaol.com, or follow him on Twitter at@bruce1971.