Donald Trump net worth: Forbes reveals why POTUS slips in rich list

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Donald Trump
US President Donald Trump announces his nomination of Neil Gorsuch to be an associate justice of the U.S. Supreme Court. Reuters/Carlos Barria

Forbes reported on Tuesday that United States President Donald Trump slipped to number 248 on its 400 rich list this year. He's tied with Snap founder Evan Spiegel.

According to Forbes, Trump's net worth dropped by US$600 (AU$764 million) to US$3.1 (AU$ 3.9 billion). He was in the156th place last year.

The updated Forbes list suggests he was not rich as he used to be, dropping 92 spots on the annual list of the 400 wealthiest people in America. The magazine has tracked Trump since the list's debut in 1982. His presidential Cabinet has been noted in the past, but he is the only member of the group to get a spot on the Forbes list.

Forbes said the president's faltering net worth is due to "a tough New York real estate market, particularly for retail locations, a costly lawsuit and an expensive presidential campaign.” Trump allegedly spent US$66 million (AU$84 million) for his presidential campaign.

Half of the president’s wealth reportedly comes from New York City real estate, but Forbes said the value of luxury real estate is down, particularly around Fifth Avenue. That reduced the value of Trump Tower and other properties Trump owns or has stakes in. Forbes also noted that some of his golf properties declined in value, and that he spent to settle a fraud lawsuit brought by former students in his Trump University program for real estate investors.

As a result, the US leader now shares his spot on the list with 27-year-old Spiegel, co-founder and CEO of the parent of Snapchat. Luisa Kroll, Forbes magazine senior wealth editor, confirmed that Spiegel was the youngest on the list this year, and the youngest for a number of years. Earlier this year, Spiegel took his photo messaging company public on the New York Stock Exchange.

Microsoft founder Bill Gates remains on top for the 24th-consecutive year, with a net worth of US$89 billion (AU$113 billion) this year. Forbes utilised closing stock prices from September 22, 2017 to compile its latest list.

Trump had commented about the Forbes 400 list when he replied to a Twitter user who asked why Forbes listed his worth as US$3 billion (AU$4 billion) in 2013. Trump wrote, “they know nothing about me or my numbers.”

Trump’s wealth has long been a subject of debate among financial experts. His Twitter followers are still waiting for him to comment about the new Forbes list.