The newest Forbes billionaires list shows that Donald Trump’s personal net worth has fallen from $4.5 billion to $3.1 billion over the past two years, NBC News reports. He fell 138 spots on the Forbes 400, a yearly list of the country’s wealthiest residents.
Despite his confident claims that he could be president and make money, Donald’s bank balance is bleeding funds. There are several reasons why, and it’s all snowballing.
The value of Trump’s many real estate holdings has gone down, and across the board they’re generating less revenue. Extra security at Trump’s various resorts is also costing Trump a lot. Meanwhile, the Trump brand itself has lost a ton of value. Trump merchandise went from $23 million in 2015 to $3 million at present.
“He has significantly tarnished the brand,” said licensing expert Jeff Lotman.
The money coming in from Trump’s golf clubs has decreased, and profits generated by Trump Tower condos have plummeted to new lows every year since Trump announced his presidential run. And his overall hotel revenue is down by about $30 million.
Trump International Hotel is making money, however, largely thanks to visiting officials and Republican politicians who frequently stay there. Mar-a-Lago’s value has also gone up astronomically, but not by enough to offset all of the broader losses.
Trump’s finances are at the center of a lot of media attention lately due to an investigation by The New York Times. The story was published on Tuesday, and it’s 8 pages long.
Three reporters worked on the story for 18 months, digging up tax returns and financial records of all kinds. They cross-checked records, spoke to sources and eventually came up with the story that everyone is talking about today.
My takeaway on the Fred/Donald Trump tax fraud/ real eatate deep dive-— Stephanie Ruhle (@SRuhle) October 3, 2018
Do you realize how BAD you have to be at business to inherit that portfolio in NEW YORK CITY many years ago and NOT be worth $10bn today?
It is almost impossible
In short, the article accuses Trump of tax fraud. This is a federal crime, according to CNN.
As a direct result of the article, Trump is now being investigated for tax fraud in New York. However, Politico reports that Trump is unlikely to suffer legal action. The specific allegations about tax evasion made by the Times happened many years ago, so it would be hard to charge him with a crime today.
The White House has denied all the allegations made by the Times, calling the article “a misleading attack against the Trump family.”
And though the Times piece claims there are “instances of outright fraud” in Trump’s financial past, charges of criminal fraud have an extremely high bar to clear. Mark Matthews, a former IRS deputy commissioner, says that proving fraud against Trump is “exceedingly unlikely.”