Donald Trump’s wealth suffered during his turbulent presidency

According to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, Donald Trump’s personal wealth took a massive hit during his presidency, figures that were further exacerbated by the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The figures quoted in the report estimate that his net worth dropped by $700 million, from $3 billion to $2.3 billion. The last year has been awful for the former president, as Mr. Trump’s hotels, golf courses, resorts, and office buildings have all reported massive revenue losses and falling value.

To obtain these figures, Bloomberg analyzed financial documents from May 2016 and January 2021, to get a gauge on how the former president’s fortune had changed before and after he had entered office. Bloomberg estimates a drop of 26% in the value of Mr. Trump’s commercial property holdings.

Many of his organization's core businesses have been among the industries hit the hardest by Covid-19.

Commercial office space is one such sector, with large numbers of workers now working from home. Whilst it is likely that many of these workers will return to office working, the trend towards working from home is set to continue even as we emerge from the pandemic. This has already had an impact on the value of the office towers Trump owns and co-owns.

Whilst his golf course interests were buffered slightly by being one of the few socially distanced sports that managed to retain some degree of normality during the pandemic, he did score an own goal on this front with his perceived involvement in the Capitol Hill siege in January of this year. Immediately after the event, the Professional Golfers Association ended the agreement to play its 2022 championship at Trump’s New Jersey Golf Course, claiming doing so would now hurt their brand.

Deutsche Bank, one of the few major institutions willing to lend to Mr. Trump after his bankruptcies of the 1990s, has also pulled the plug, citing his involvement in the January riots.

What about the future?

Last month, the Supreme Court ordered the former president to hand over his tax returns to New York Prosecutors. The secrecy that shrouded Mr. Trump’s finances and tax records during his tenure could well be lifted, and much of how he will fare in the future is dependent on what they reveal.  

However, Donald Trump has proven to be incredibly resilient. Despite these ongoing tax investigations and potential criminal charges, it would be foolish to think that the future is bleak for the former president.

Amongst other things, there are potential media deals that are bound to lift his personal fortune. The Obama’s were reportedly paid $65 million for their memoirs after they left the White House, and in 2004 Bill Clinton received a $15 million advance on his memoirs.

Bloomberg has also suggested that Mr. Trump can profit by setting up his own news and social media channels, which will undoubtedly appeal to his undiminished supporter base, estimated to be around 20 million strong. And, of course, there won’t be a single item of “fake news” to be found on any of his platforms.