Hip hop's highest earners in 2016 features a few surprises

Over the past 12 months the world’s top 20 hip hop artists pulled in almost half a billion dollars between them – nothing compared to the year Dr Dre made $600 million on his own, but that was definitely an anomaly.

Diddy is still sitting top of the pile in what would have been his fifth consecutive year in that position were it not for Dre’s aforementioned Beats pay day, while the usual suspects of Jay Z and Dre make up the top three.

Ciroc is still a huge earner for Diddy, as are a whole host of other non-musical ventures, while Jay’s Roc Nation company, Armand de Brignac champagne and D’Ussé cognac contribute to making his bank account stronger. Dre, meanwhile, continues to pocket cash from the Apple Beats buyout and Straight Outta Compton.

The real story comes with Drake sitting in fourth, having raked in $38.5 million (£28.8 million) in the last year, and he’s one of a few new names to make the list. Deals with Nike, Sprite and Apple have helped him reach those lofty heights, while his new whiskey Virginia Black and a strip club set to open in Houston may help keep him there.

Other names to note in the top 20 include Wiz Khalifa at five, proving that smoking weed all day every day doesn’t need to burn a hole in your pocket, A$AP Rocky’s fashion ventures helping him up to 13, and the return of DJ Khaled at number 12.

Nicki Minaj is the only female rapper to make the list, sitting nicely at number six, while Rick Ross and Ludacris complete the 20.

Here’s the list in full.

1. Diddy – $62 million (£46.4 million)

2. Jay Z – $53.5 million (£40 million)

3. Dr Dre – $41 million (£30.7 million

4. Drake $38.5 million (£28.8 million)

5. Wiz Khalifa $24 million (£17.9 million)

6. Nicki Minaj $20.5 million (£15.3 million)

7. Pitbull $20 million (£14.9 million)

8. Pharrell Williams $19.5 million (£14.6 million)

9. Kendrick Lamar $18.5 million (£13.9 million)

10. Birdman $18 million (£13.5 million)

11. Kanye West $17.5 million (£13.1 million)

12. DJ Khaled $15 million (£11.2 million)

13. A$AP Rocky $14.5 million (£10.8 million)

14. J. Cole $14 million (£10.5 million)

14. Lil Wayne $14 million (£10.5 million)

14. Macklemore & Ryan Lewis $14 million (£10.5 million

17. Snoop Dogg $12.5 million (£9.3 million)

18. Eminem $11 million (£8.2 million)

19. Swizz Beatz $10.5 million (£7.8 million)

20. Rick Ross $10 million (£7.5 million)

20. Ludacris $10 million (£7.5 million)

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