With a fortune of $90 billion, Amazon's chief executive officer Jeff Bezos briefly overtook Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates to become the richest person in the world on Thursday. Bezos lost the top spot in less than 24 hours when Amazon's stock dropped as the online firm reported its second quarter earnings showing a profit of $197 million on strong sales of $38 billion.

According to Forbes, Bezos had a net worth of $90.6 billion on Thursday, briefly putting him $500 million ahead of Gates.

"Amazon stock opened up 1.6 percent on Thursday, adding $1.4 billion to Bezos' net worth. That was enough to put him ahead of Gates, who was last surpassed on Forbes' real-time rankings for just two days nearly a year ago by Spanish retail giant Amancio Ortega," Forbes reported.

Amazon's shares traded at $1,055.37 at 2.17 pm in New York, after climbing as high as $1,083.31. So, Bezos finished the day worth $88 billion, just behind the $89 billion for Gates.

The 53-year-old is the seventh person to hold the title of the world's richest person, while Gates has been the world's wealthiest since May 2013. According to the Sun, Bezos could soon regain the crown.

Bezos, who owns about 17 percent of Seattle-based Amazon, started 2017 as the world's fourth wealthiest person and has since surpassed Warren Buffett and Inditex founder Amancio Ortega, 81, who ranks third with $82.7 billion. Bezos has added more than $24 billion in net worth since January 2017.

Amazon founder Jeff Bezos in quotes

Amazon.com, the world's largest online shopping retailer, began as an internet merchant of books and expanded to a wide variety of products and services, most recently video streaming and audio streaming. The e-commerce juggernaut's market value surpassed $500 billion this week for the first time ever.

Amazon.com is currently the world's largest internet sales company as well as the world's largest provider of cloud infrastructure services, through its Amazon Web Services arm.