President Donald Trump claims his net worth to be $10 billion, but analysis by Bloomberg News says that that number is closer to $2.9 billion thanks to New York City's current real estate market -- which has taken major hits in recent years -- and serious underperformance by three key Trump properties.
Caleb Melby said Wednesday that "the core of Trump's empire" is comprised of buildings he bought and rebranded in the 1980s and 90s, but that when people are looking for new office space in Manhattan, Trump properties are low on the desirability list.
Melby looked at three Trump properties, all skyscrapers that Trump intended to rent as office space and all of which are "underperforming appraisals conducted when Trump was issued loans. The buildings -- 40 Wall Street, Trump Tower, and 1290 Avenue of the Americas, a tower in which Trump holds a 30 percent stake -- are victims of a changing New York office market, where gleaming new skyscrapers are attracting tenants and demand for space in vintage properties is falling."
"That’s the biggest finding in an updated assessment of the president’s net worth," Melby wrote, "which has slipped to $2.9 billion, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, down from $3 billion a year ago. The calculation, five months after Trump’s inauguration, relies on figures compiled from lenders, mortgage documents, annual reports, market data and a new financial disclosure released June 16."
Vanity Fair's Bess Levin noted on Wednesday that Trump claimed in 2015 that he is worth more than $10 billion. Bloomberg claims that is actually a wildly inflated figure.
Melby said that the method used to determine Trump properties' actual worth "previously relied in part on banks’ estimates and appraisals," but now estimates their value based "solely on the three properties’ actual financial results disclosed by managers of mortgage-security trusts that hold Trump debt."
The revised figure for the three towers plunged by $380 million.
Watch the Bloomberg report, embedded below: