By Aaron Bonsu
According to Forbes, President Donald Trump’s net worth declined to $3.1 billion this year. The president got bumped down ninety-two spots to 248th place in the business magazine’s list of wealthy billionaires. This collapse in the standings stems from his large stake in New York City real estate. His New York properties, including his namesake Trump Tower, account for most of his value. Yet, the real estate market in the city has taken a significant hit over the past year. The hit effects Trump in a direct manner. According to Bloomberg’s Caleb Melby, three of President Trump’s New York buildings did not meet their projected income estimates. With the commercial real estate market fall, the value of Trump’s New York office tower properties dropped by as much as $100 million in the past year. The reason behind this loss of value and wealth; yet, is a tad bit more complex. For Forbes’ Kerry Dolan, the losses for Trump’s real estate come from the battle between e-commerce and brick and mortar retailers. The e-commerce
companies, like Amazon, appear to have a stranglehold over the industry. This profit is at the cost of the brick and mortar stores that occupy the space of Trump’s real estate. With the brick and mortars down, the properties that they usually occupy have fallen in value as well.
The drop for the president’s finances does not stop at the end of the New York City limits. Trump’s spending during the 2016 presidential campaign helped to reduce his net worth. The president’s spending to settle the lawsuit facing his namesake university contributed to his decreased net worth as well. Also, a fall in the value of some of the President Trump’s golf courses and resorts added to the net worth woes. Not everything was down for the president though. The San Francisco office building he holds a minority-stake in increased in value over the past year. The Trump International Tower in Las Vegas, a hotel and condo tower, increased in value as well. Among the other features to the president’s wealth that Forbes noted includes brand businesses, such product licensing for items such as ties with the Trump name. Also included were his personal assets. These assets account for his planes, along with homes in Florida, California, and the West Indies.
The intrigue in the president’s finances comes from the little knowledge the public knows about him. Some of the information we do know comes from President Trump stating that he was a rather wealthy man during the presidential campaign. This includes mentioning that he is worth $10 billion in his financial disclosure statement for the 2016 campaign. Trump’s decision not to release his tax returns during the 2016 election season was, and continues to be, an element to how little we know about his worth and economic dealings. There are even disputes among major financial news sources about the actual net worth of the president. While the emphasis in the media was on Forbes recent list, Bloomberg’s list of wealthy billionaires has Trump at a lower $2.86 billion in their June 2017 update.