Jay Z's fortunes jumped 30 percent last year to give him an estimated net worth of US$810 million ($NZ1.2b), but it was not enough to dethrone Sean "Diddy" Combs from the top of Forbes' annual list of the world's wealthiest hip-hop artists.
Combs, known onstage as Puff Daddy or P Diddy, retained his No. 1 spot with an estimated net worth of US$820 million, helped by his lucrative deals with Ciroc vodka, and his Sean John clothing line, Forbes said.
But rapper and producer Jay Z moved into second place with US$810 million thanks largely to a US$200 million investment in his Tidal music streaming service from wireless carrier Sprint in January.
Forbes produced the list by looking at past earnings and financial documents, valuing current holdings, and talking to analysts, attorneys, managers, and other industry players.
The top five was rounded out by Dr Dre (US$740 million), rapper and Cash Money Records co-owner Bryan "Birdman" Williams (US$110 million), and Canadian rapper Drake with an estimated US$90 million.