Donald Trump Is Just Like You: Not On The Forbes 400.
Very funny news to report, and it is that Donald Trump is poor now, again. Specifically, he is poor in the way everybody who is not on the Forbes 400 is poor, because he ain't on it anymore, for the first time in 25 whole years.
Forbes says he's worth $2.5 billion at the moment, which we're always curious about, because we're skeptical anytime somebody calls Trump a "Billionaire" with a B. It's just kinda ... are we sure? Gonna need to see more receipts before we put our faith in such a proposition. But yeah, sure, maybe!
Forbes notes that he's about the same level of richness as he was last year, but he's lost $600 million since the COVID-19 pandemic began. And it's HIS FAULT. Here's part of why:
[B]ig-city properties—which make up the bulk of Trump's fortune—have languished, knocking the former president out of the nation's most-exclusive club.
We'd imagine it can't help that many of these properties are named "Trump." Hard to imagine that being a selling point these days. Maybe if he tried giving them a name that sounds luxurious and not tacky.
But there's another big reason it's Trump's fault:
If Trump is looking for someone to blame, he can start with himself. Five years ago, he had a golden opportunity to diversify his fortune. Fresh off the 2016 election, federal ethics officials were pushing Trump to divest his real estate assets. That would have allowed him to reinvest the proceeds into broad-based index funds and assume office free of conflicts of interest.
But he didn't because he didn't want to, and because he didn't care how corrupt he looked. (The president is actually not required to divest, as Forbes reminds us, and as Trump was VERY EXCITED to learn.) But it turns out that BIG SURPRISE, that was also a very stupid business decision. What a shocker, right?
Forbes explains that if he had divested back then, he might have had to pay some big capital gains taxes. (It's actually unclear, and if you care why, you can read the source article.) However, even if he had paid those capital gains taxes, if he had reinvested the remainder in index funds or something, he'd probably be a couple billion ameros richer now than he currently is, according to Forbes's calculations. If he had gotten out of paying the capital gains taxes entirely? Oh boy, he'd be pretty rich!
As it is ... not real impressive.
Forbes also includes a very funny graph called "Tumbling off the Forbes 400," which shows how for about 20 years, Trump was not only on the list, but in the top half. Then he became president, and he became a bottom-halfer on the Forbes 400, like a common loser, and now he's done tumbled off it, like it was a big steep ramp or something, literally months after he suffered the humiliation of losing the presidential election in a landslide.
Have a fun Forbes 400 day, Donald Trump!
Or as people not on the list call it, "Tuesday."
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