"For the second year running, our votes went with the Russian president as the world’s most powerful person, followed by US President Barack Obama and Chinese leader Xi Jinping," Forbes said on its website.
The magazine's annual ranking of the World’s Most Powerful People "is based on voting by a panel of Forbes editors, who consider things like financial resources, scope and use of power, and the number of people they impact," Forbes said.
The 2014 list features 17 heads of state who run nations with a combined GDP of some $48 trillion and 39 CEOs and chairpersons who control over $3.6 trillion in annual revenues, Forbes said.
Obama had been on the top of the list launched in 2009 for every year except 2010 when he was outstripped by China's leader Hu Jintao.
"Heading into the second half of his second term, Obama seems stymied both by the West African Ebola breakout and a blood-thirsty militia named ISIS which threaten to undo all the gains of a 9-year war in Iraq that cost the lives of 4,500 Americans," Forbes said. "He has the power but has been too cautious to fully exercise it."