Trump Somehow Lost Over $1 Billion While Grifting in Office

JM Ashby
Written by JM Ashby

Trump has funneled tens of millions of dollars to himself through the government by spending a significant amount of time in office at his own business properties (over 200 days and counting), but he has still managed to lose a great deal of money.

In addition to spending time at his own properties, Trump has also benefited from numerous conservative interest groups and lobbyists holding events at his properties without him, but Forbes estimates that Trump has somehow lost about a $1.4 billion over the past two years.

Forbes attributed the decline of Trump's fortune to three main factors: e-commerce eating into the value of Trump's real estate holdings, the intrusion of heightened security at Trump's resorts, and Trump's own over-reporting of the size of his penthouse. [...]

Revenue from Trump-branded ties, whiskies, MAGA hats and other merchandise has plummeted to just $3 million from $23 million in 2015. “He has significantly tarnished the brand,” licensing expert Jeff Lotman told Forbes.

According to Forbes, revenue at Trump's golf clubs has dropped by 9 percent, the value of his residential properties has dropped by 33 percent, and his hotels have been operating at a loss of about $30 million. Trump's net worth has dropped from $4.5 billion to $3.1 billion.

Now, some may look at this and say running for and becoming president has been bad for Trump's finances, but I look at this a different way.

If Trump has lost this much money while funneling millions to himself by visiting his properties every weekend where the Secret Service is forced to rent Trump's own golf carts to protect him, where would he be without that?

Given everything we now know about the Trump family's nearly century-long history of tax fraud, and given what we know about the Trump family's ties to foreign banks and Russian financiers, it seems reasonable to think Trump would have declared bankruptcy recently or soon would if he had not ran for office.

In other words, Trump may have lost money since running for office, but that doesn't necessarily mean he wouldn't have lost even more money if he didn't run for office.

  • Badgerite

    trump loses money? Of course he does. That’s why he went bankrupt 6 times. That’s why he needs Russian mob money funneled into his businesses to keep him afloat. And now he can just siphon off American taxpayer money and sell policy, domestic and foreign, to the highest bidder. Michael Cohen was the conduit for those kinds of arrangements here at home. Manafort was probably the conduit for those arrangements abroad but he has recently been replaced by the gop party as the conduit for the purchase of influence and policy.

  • Georgie

    My dream is slowly coming true, to see the trump brand wither and die.

  • Username1016

    I’m delighted to hear he’s losing money. The only thing he cares about is money, so this should hit him where it hurts. And when New York State and the IRS demand their back taxes and fines, that will be even more painful. Yay!!!!

  • muselet

    Trump notwithstanding, it’s been a record year for the nation’s billionaires, according to Forbes. Their total net worth rose 7 percent year on year to a high of $2.9 trillion, with an average net worth of $7.2 billion each, versus $6.7 billion last year.

    Donald Trump’s fortune has always been more smoke and mirrors than piles of money. Without a constant supply of hot air and 200-proof ego, his business empire would long since have been spoken of in the past tense.

    And being president, just to burden this comment with yet another tortured metaphor, means Trump has too many balls in the air. His personally-branded merchandise—which he relies on for cash flow—isn’t selling, and hotel and golf course revenues are down, and it’s not clear what he can possibly do to reverse the trend. Even if he simply stopped being president, I’m not sure it would be enough.

    Trump is a long way from eating beans out of a can, mind, and there are always suckers who will loan someone like that entirely too much money with entirely too few conditions attached. Which is too bad, because I like the thought of him panhandling on the subway.

    Better him than the rest of us.


    • katanahamon

      Well, he’s bailing out the farmers again, perhaps there’s a bailout he can arrange for himself…oh, yeah..he’s already doing that by flouting emoluments, grifting off of the weekend golf trips, and god only knows what we don’t know regarding under the table payments he and his family are accepting to sell their influence.

      • muselet

        He’s doing all that and still losing money. Maybe there’s something to this karma lark after all.


  • katanahamon

    Aside from my other comment, why has no one raised the issue of the terrible implications of a presidential/White House directed sham FBI “investigation”? First, Rump agreed immediately when it was suggested, which to me means this was all calculated, and looking back, clearly it was. Four or five days long, the main protagonists weren’t even talked to, etc, and a no surprise “conclusion” that no wrong doi..oh wait, the report was secretly viewed in a SCIF so really, we don’t know what it said. What’s next, a four day investigation into Benghazi leading to jailing Hillary Clinton? Where is the outrage? Where is the media or investigative reporters? No one else found it curious how Rump agreed so quickly to an FBI investigation after all the things he said about them? I said it the minute I heard about’s not just fishy, it’s freakin’ obvious..this was all a giant sham.

  • katanahamon

    He only ran for office to try to raise cash..and why he’s still allowed to grift baffles me. I’ve never seen any reporter or media outlet ask “by the way, who’s paying for these propaganda rallies, and why does no one call out the lies?” Or, why we haven’t demanded Rump’s tax returns, prosecuted his flagrant emoluments violations, or prosecuted any number of his obvious crimes such as his fraudulent university, paying off of officials to not investigate his fraudulent university, tax evasions and fraudulent charity etc.? This is the most divisive president and majority party we’ve ever seen, he’s never even made an attempt to pretend to represent all the people, and these constant, divisive, propagandistic campaign rallies smack of Nazi Germany before WW2. But, we allow it, we normalize it, we encourage it.