Billionaire Donald Trump has emerged as the frontrunner in the race for Republican nomination for U.S. presidential candidate. Just like Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders, Trump seems to be a huge favorite for Republican nomination on the backdrop of impressive victory in the New Hampshire primary.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 10, 2016
“Billionaire Mr Trump is likely to get more than twice the number of votes of the next Republican candidate”, writes the BBC.
However, everyone is not pleased with Donald Trump’s rise in American politics, with writer Ezra Klein of Vox.com even going as far to calling the outspoken presidential candidate’s rise “terrifying.”
This is the harshest thing I've ever written about a major presidential candidate. But it's deserved: https://t.co/inn0fWQCP9
— Ezra Klein (@ezraklein) February 10, 2016
Forbes has estimated Donald Trump’s net worth to be $4.5 billion. But the Republican presidential candidate has claimed that his actual fortune is more than $10 billion. This even led to Fortune Magazine building a calculator claiming that it could be used by readers to estimate their own net worth using what they called “The Donald’s math.”
It’s worth taking a moment to mention here that Trump once valued his “brand” alone at $3 billion. When in July, Bloomberg News valued Trump’s wealth at $2.9 billion, the reality TV star said that Michael Bloomberg may have “told them to do it.” Trump alleged that the founder of the media empire did it because “he always wanted to do what I’m doing.”
Whether he meant running for American president or being a real-estate developer or a reality TV star, only Trump knows for sure. But one thing is for sure: Trump is not the one who is shy of asserting his wealth.
Trump has made most of his fortune by inheriting his father’s real-estate business back in 1974, along with his four brothers. The company was valued at around $200 million. This meant Trump’s shares alone would have been worth $40 million.
According to Vox.com, “If Trump had invested that $40 million in an S&P 500 index fund in 1974, and reinvested all the dividends, not cash out and paid no fees, by August of 2015 he would have been worth $3.4 billion.”
Similarly, the Associated Press estimates that “If Trump had invested $200 million in an index fund in 1988 (a Forbes estimate of Trump’s value at that time), Trump would be worth $13 billion today. A similar calculation using an S&P calculator figures he would be worth $11.3 billion after fees and taxes.”
It’s interesting to note here how actually Trump calculates his own net worth. Here’s what he said in a statement he gave in a 2006 lawsuit.
Q. Let me just understand that a little bit. Let’s talk about net worth for a second. You said that the net worth goes up and down based upon your own feelings?
A. Yes, even my own feelings, as to where the world is, where the world is going, and that can change rapidly from day to day. Then you have a September 11th, and you don’t feel so good about yourself and you don’t feel so good about the world and you don’t feel so good about New York City. Then you have a year later, and the city is as hot as a pistol. Even months after that it was a different feeling. So yeah, even my own feelings affect my value to myself.
Q. When you publicly state what you’re worth, what do you base that number on?
A. I would say it’s my general attitude at the time that the question may be asked. And as I say, it varies.
[Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images]