Who are Forbes' 10 most powerful women?

Every year, Forbes releases a list of the world’s most powerful woman, influential in everything from politics to technology to culture.

1. German Chancellor Angela Merkel

Michael Sohn/AP
German Chancellor Angela Merkel smiles at the beginning of the weekly board meeting of the German Christian Democratic party in Berlin on Aug. 22.

Chancellor Merkel is not only the most powerful woman in the world, according to Forbes, but the sixth most powerful person when men are included on the list. She is head of Europe’s “one real global economy” and the “undisputed” leader of the European Union during one of the EU’s most turbulent periods.
As the leader of the only European country with a booming economy, her support has been critical to stabilizing the union’s debt and keeping it unified, and bailing out other countries. However, her economic decisions haven’t necessarily made her popular among her German constitutents who say they are tired of bailing out irresponsible neighbors. Her approval rating is in the 30s. However, her global ranking is up from No. 4 last year to the top spot this year. On the overall list, she is No. 6.

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