Merkel is still world’s most powerful lady

GERMAN Chancellor Angela Merkel has kept her crown as the world’s most powerful woman for the third year in a row.

The Chancellor, who has featured top in seven out of the past ten years that the list has existed, was described by Forbes, which compiles the annual World’s Most Powerful Women list, as the “backbone of the 27-member European Union.”

High flying female politicians continued to dominate the list with Brazilian Prime Minister Dilma Rousseff second, America’s first lady Michelle Obama ranked fourth and Hillary Clinton, despite no longer holding her US secretary of state role, fifth. IMF managing director Christine Lagarde was ranked seventh.

But the prestigious list, which features 100 women ranked according to net worth, media presence and impact, also starred a growing number of high-profile business figures.

Tech names featured heavily with Facebook’s chief operating officer, Sheryl Sandberg rising to sixth place from tenth as her new book encouraging women to “lean in” was credited with sparking a new conversation on feminism in the workplace.

HP chief executive Meg Whitman made 15th place, while Yahoo chief executive Marissa Mayer, slipped to 32nd from 21st.

While American women continued to dominate the rankings, women from 25 other countries were also featured.

The Queen dropped her ranking from 26 to 40, while Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling fell further down the ladder for yet another year, dropping from 78 to 93.