President Donald Trump may be the first billionaire to become president of the United States but his tenure in office could be having a detrimental effect on his wealth. The latest list of the world’s richest people, released Monday by Forbes, saw the former construction mogul fall 220 spots to the 544th position.
Trump saw his net worth fall from $4.5 billion last year to $3.5 billion Monday, the day the newest ranking was published.
The 70-year-old took office in January, and resigned from his businesses to separate the Trump Organization from his presidency to avoid any possible conflict of interest. The organization is currently run by his sons — Donald Jr. and Eric — and his properties have been placed under a trust created by Trump.
The main contributor — almost 40 percent — to Trump’s wealth is “a handful of buildings in midtown Manhattan in New York City,” despite having diversified his business interests in the country and outside, including office towers, private golf clubs and luxury hotels. The fall in his net worth is also being attributed to his Manhattan properties.
“Midtown Manhattan real estate is down; therefore, so is Donald Trump’s fortune,” Forbes said in a statement.
In the past, Trump has disagreed with Forbes’ figures and during his campaign he claimed that he was worth $8.7 billion. In a personal financial disclosure form filed with the federal government last year, Trump said his net worth was over $10 billion. Forbes, however, says that “Donald Trump has been trying to spin his Forbes valuation for more than three decades.”
“In the early years, editors even joked about the ‘Trump rule’ — take what he claims and divide by three,” Randall Lane, editor of Forbes Magazine, was quoted as saying by the Washington Post.
The list was topped by Microsoft founder Bill Gates — for the fourth year in a row — with a net worth of $86 billion, a jump of $11 billion from last year. The second spot was taken by Berkshire Hathaway Chairman Warren Buffett, and Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos came in third.