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Where are the tax returns?

I was reading some old news stories and one caught my attention: the question of Donald Trump’s tax returns. The story recounted the long list of excuses Trump has given for not releasing them, such as saying that maybe he would release them if Obama released his birth certificate, or if Hillary Clinton released her emails. I was wondering whether the tax return issue would resurface in the general election campaign. Now that the de facto nominees of the two parties have been decided. general election issues are coming out, and Trump’s tax returns are one of them.

I wouldn’t have mentioned this, except the birther web site Birther Report has an article: “Coordinated: Hillary Clinton Political Campaign Ad Uses Obama’s Forged Birth Certificate to Attack Donald Trump.”

The political ad from the Clinton campaign does double duty by reminding the public of Trump’s humiliation by President Obama over the release of his birth certificate but more substantively making the point that Trump refuses to release his tax returns. It points out to me just how much of a mainstream issue birtherism is.

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50 Responses to Where are the tax returns?

  1. avatar
    The Magic M (not logged in) May 17, 2016 at 6:08 am #

    just how much of a mainstream issue birtherism is

    Depends on the definition of “mainstream issue”. In the sense that “many have heard about it”, yes. In the sense that “many are discussing it”, no.

    Just like pointing out how the GOP Congress ignores Zika whereas they had a collective freak-out about Ebola in 2014.

  2. avatar
    CRJ May 17, 2016 at 8:22 am #

    By “Obama Birther Standards” the Election must pass, Trump must move in the White House, light the Christmas Tree three times and wait six months before re-election before unveiling his Tax Returns.

    This is what it took for Obama to release his long form .. Whatever “that” was.

    I have no idea why anti-Birthers don’t understand the Standard after Obama set it?

    Three Years for a $10 item folks.. [Three] Years 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011

    #ClintonJustDeletes what she hasn’t fabricated

    P.S. if Trumps not elected all bets are off.. He doesn’t need to waste his time. If he is elected Obama’s Standard makes any thing likely to remove him worthy of discredit.. After all isn’t that why Obama was never vetted after getting in? -AMERICA would be burned down?

  3. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy May 17, 2016 at 10:08 am #

    The difference is that Obama released his official birth certificate before the 2008 election, and the release of birth certificates is NOT common practice for presidential candidates. The release of tax returns IS.

    CRJ: This is what it took for Obama to release his long form .. Whatever “that” was.

  4. avatar
    Arthur B. May 17, 2016 at 10:11 am #

    CRJ: This is what it took for Obama to release his long form ..

    The President released his COLB — the official Hawaiian birth certificate — during his first presidential campaign. It is presumed authentic under Rule 902 of the Federal Rules of Evidence, and is therefore entitled to full faith and credit under Article IV, Section 1 of the Constitution. There has been no competent evidence introduced in any court of law to cast doubt on the document’s authenticity.

    Should the document fail to satisfy you personally, that is of no legal consequence.

  5. avatar
    Scientist May 17, 2016 at 10:29 am #

    CRJ: By “Obama Birther Standards”

    By Obama birther Standards, Trump has yet to prove that he was born in the US and that his mother was a US citizen. A few months ago, I offered $100 to anyone who could prove that and it’s still in my wallet. You are welcome to try if you wish, though the time limit has expired.

  6. avatar
    The Magic M (not logged in) May 17, 2016 at 10:40 am #

    Scientist: By Obama birther Standards, Trump has yet to prove that he was born in the US and that his mother was a US citizen.

    Indeed nobody on the birther side even mentions it (very very few mention in passing that he has “released” his BC, completely forgetting there is no “long form” or original in sight).
    Of course, Trump is neither black nor of Hispanic origin, nor was he born with a funny-sounding foreign name. The clear-cut racism shows again.

    Most birthers have walked back to “he’d only need to release it if there were doubts where he was born, and I have no doubts”.

  7. avatar
    The Magic M (not logged in) May 17, 2016 at 10:48 am #

    CRJ: why Obama was never vetted after getting in

    The US don’t vet their Presidents *after* they get in. They do that during the election. And Obama passed that vetting process. Twice.

    CRJ: I have no idea why anti-Birthers don’t understand the Standard after Obama set it?

    Nobody demands Trump release his original long form birth certificate. Tax records are a different matter, if you haven’t been living under a rock for the last 75+ years.

    Basically you’re saying “because Obama never caved to our ludicrous demands, no President has to show anything ever again”.

    Of course you are right, Trump is not legally obligated to release his tax records. And US voters are free to take that as an admission there’s something fishy with them (or not, as they did in the case of the birth certificate nonsense).

    But aren’t you the one who claims candidates should release everything demanded of them so they can be “properly vetted”? Within your own warped logic, does that mean because one “tyrant usurper” got through, you will never want to vet any other candidate? That is stupid even by the standards of your warped reality.
    “Hey, we couldn’t vet the next Alinsky, so why bother vetting the next Hitler?”

    CRJ: if Trumps not elected all bets are off.. He doesn’t need to waste his time.

    Whatever that is supposed to mean.
    Do you mean he should “waste his time” to get vetted only after he is elected? And what does that entail? A concession he will let people vote a second time?
    Or do you cling to the hope that Trump will go after Obama even more when he is not elected?

  8. avatar
    Scientist May 17, 2016 at 10:55 am #

    The Magic M (not logged in): Most birthers have walked back to “he’d only need to release it if there were doubts where he was born, and I have no doubts”.

    I will keep it simple for our friend CRJ and put Trump’s birth certificate aside. His mother was born in Scotland. Most birthers believe both parents must be US citizens to make one a natural born citizen. So a simple question-what is the evidence Mrs. Trump naturalized before His Donaldness was born? Should be a piece of cake, but I have never seen any birther even ask.

  9. avatar
    bob May 17, 2016 at 11:03 am #

    And, of course, “candidate” Judy refuses to release his IFP application.

    I don’t ask “What is Judy hiding?” because it is obvious enough what Judy is hiding: his failure to properly complete the IFP application.

  10. avatar
    Curious George May 17, 2016 at 11:28 am #

    Not long ago, Mitt Romney was balking at the idea that he should release his tax returns. Now, we hear Romney demanding that Trump release his tax returns. Trump has already released his financial reports for review by the press and the public. Trump has not said that he won’t release his tax returns, but only after his ongoing audit. One certainly will see more in Trump’s financial reports than one will probably see in his tax returns. As far as I know, there is no law that requires Romney or Trump to release their tax returns or their birth certificates. And, if there was a problem with Trump’s or Romney’s tax returns, wouldn’t the IRS be more capable of finding issues with their returns than the public or the media?

  11. avatar
    J.D. Sue May 17, 2016 at 12:53 pm #

    Curious George: One certainly will see more in Trump’s financial reports than one will probably see in his tax returns. . . . And, if there was a problem with Trump’s or Romney’s tax returns, wouldn’t the IRS be more capable of finding issues with their returns than the public or the media?

    —-

    One will see different things in tax returns — financial reports are not a substitute for tax returns. I would like to see them.

  12. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy May 17, 2016 at 12:55 pm #

    I don’t think irregularities are the issue. The questions are 1) Does Trump pay a lower tax rate than other less wealthy Americans? 2) Is Trump not as rich as he claims to be? 3) Does he exploit tax loopholes to shelter income from taxes? The likely answer to all of those questions is “yes” and a reason that Trump hasn’t released his returns. The audit issue is a non starter. Why would it make any difference?

    Curious George: And, if there was a problem with Trump’s or Romney’s tax returns, wouldn’t the IRS be more capable of finding issues with their returns than the public or the media?

  13. avatar
    trader jack May 17, 2016 at 4:22 pm #

    Dr. Conspiracy:
    I don’t think irregularities are the issue. The questions are 1) Does Trump pay a lower tax rate than other less wealthy Americans? 2) Is Trump not as rich as he claims to be? 3) Does he exploit tax loopholes to shelter income from taxes? The likely answer to all of those questions is “yes” and a reason that Trump hasn’t released his returns. The audit issue is a non starter. Why would it make any difference?

    the tax rates are the same for everyone, some people have creative ways to lower their taxable income, which is , in fact, the American way, is it not.

    And, lest it be forgotten, his wealth is in property, all of which pays taxes in one form or another.

    And, let us not forget that the contribution of charity funds to non-profits, are not 100% deductible, but , are in a sense, a contribution to the USA governmental expenses.

    I suppose Hilary special non-profit would also be income not taxed, would it not.

  14. avatar
    JD Reed May 17, 2016 at 4:25 pm #

    Arthur B.: The President released his COLB — the official Hawaiian birth certificate — during his first presidential campaign. It is presumed authentic under Rule 902 of the Federal Rules of Evidence, and is therefore entitled to full faith and credit under Article IV, Section 1 of the Constitution. There has been no competent evidence introduced in any court of law to cast doubt on the document’s authenticity.

    Should the document fail to satisfy you personally, that is of no legal consequence.

    Hear, hear! Just love your last sentence. Though it would have been fine to omit the word “legal.”

  15. avatar
    Curios George May 17, 2016 at 4:35 pm #

    Dr. Conspiracy:
    I don’t think irregularities are the issue. The questions are 1) Does Trump pay a lower tax rate than other less wealthy Americans? 2) Is Trump not as rich as he claims to be? 3) Does he exploit tax loopholes to shelter income from taxes? The likely answer to all of those questions is “yes” and a reason that Trump hasn’t released his returns. The audit issue is a non starter. Why would it make any difference?

    Some speculated that Romney was resisting the release of his tax returns because of his tithes to the LDS. If that really was the reason, isn’t it his right to make monetary donations to his church? It wouldn’t bother me in the least. Likewise, if Trump has great tax advisors and he is using the tax code to his benefit, I’m good with that as well. I believe Trump will release his returns, but I also believe that it’s not a legal requirement for him to do so.

  16. avatar
    donna May 17, 2016 at 5:02 pm #

    Sitting President Richard “I am not a crook” Nixon released his tax returns

    Why do presidents release tax returns? Hint: ‘I am not a …’

    http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/Politics/Decoder/2011/0418/Tax-Day-2011-Why-do-presidents-release-tax-returns-Hint-I-am-not-a

    Trump has handed over tax returns in the midst of audits before — to state gambling officials in Pennsylvania and New Jersey, as part of the process of seeking casino licenses in those states. .

    http://www.cnn.com/2016/05/11/politics/donald-trump-casino-licenses-tax-returns/

  17. avatar
    Dr. Kenneth Noisewater May 17, 2016 at 5:13 pm #

    CRJ: This is what it took for Obama to release his long form

    Umm no. The short form is the $10 item which was released before he was even president. The long form which most presidents have never shown is no longer used by Hawaii. He was never under any obligation to show it. It’s been pretty standard since George Romney for candidates to release their tax returns.

  18. avatar
    Thrifty May 17, 2016 at 7:40 pm #

    It warms the cockles of my heart to see Hillary Clinton’s campaign making use of Trump’s baggage and doing the necessary mudslinging.

  19. avatar
    Scientist May 17, 2016 at 8:18 pm #

    Curios George: I believe Trump will release his returns, but I also believe that it’s not a legal requirement for him to do so.

    It’s not a legal requirement to debate either. Would you give him a pass if he ducked those too?

  20. avatar
    trader jack May 17, 2016 at 8:44 pm #

    why is there any requirement that anyone release their tax forms?

    No one really likes to talk ,, or show, information about their financial situation?

    besides, most people think that tax returns are full of baloney anyway.

    If you won’t believe what a politician says, or espouses, why would you think that their tax returns are true or false?

    Which politicians do you think are not telling truth about their lives at this time of their lifetimes?

    I send in about $3-500 over my calculated taxes and let them refund any money that they want as they pay better than the bank for the time they hold the money.

  21. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy May 17, 2016 at 9:10 pm #

    As you well know, there is no such requirement, but the release of returns is a longstanding tradition.

    trader jack: why is there any requirement that anyone release their tax forms?

  22. avatar
    Curious George May 17, 2016 at 9:10 pm #

    Scientist: It’s not a legal requirement to debate either.Would you give him a pass if he ducked those too?

    I guess it would depend on how many debates had already occurred and who was conducting the debate. I’ve always enjoyed watching political debates over the last several decades. For the most part, they’re very informative. But, during that same interval, I’ve never once been concerned about viewing a presidential candidate’s tax return, whether the candidate was Democratic or Republican or Independent. I think the IRS has tax returns covered.

  23. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy May 17, 2016 at 9:20 pm #

    The issue with Romney’s tax returns was the rate he paid. The effective tax rate Romney paid on his taxes was 13.9% on an income of $21 million, which is about 1% more than I paid on a tiny fraction of Romney’s income.

    One other thing his tax returns showed: he had no wages. All of his income was from investments.

    Curios George: Some speculated that Romney was resisting the release of his tax returns because of his tithes to the LDS. If that really was the reason, isn’t it his right to make monetary donations to his church?

  24. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy May 17, 2016 at 9:30 pm #

    So you are saying that Trump shouldn’t be worried about releasing his tax returns?

    trader jack: the tax rates are the same for everyone, some people have creative ways to lower their taxable income, which is , in fact, the American way, is it not.

  25. avatar
    Curious George May 17, 2016 at 9:37 pm #

    Dr. Conspiracy:
    The issue with Romney’s tax returns was the rate he paid. The effective tax rate Romney paid on his taxes was 13.9% on an income of $21 million, which is about 1% more than I paid on a tiny fraction of Romney’s income.

    Mitt Romney must have had some great tax shelters. Would you suggest a flat tax with no deductions, or something else?

  26. avatar
    Rickey May 18, 2016 at 1:56 am #

    Curious George: Mitt Romney must have had some great tax shelters.Would you suggest a flat tax with no deductions, or something else?

    There’s no need to go from one extreme to another. No one is suggesting that Romney did anything illegal, but it points out that there is something seriously deficient about a tax system in which a person whose annual income is $21 million pays a lower tax rate than most middle class workers.

  27. avatar
    RanTalbott May 18, 2016 at 7:07 am #

    trader jack: If you won’t believe what a politician says, or espouses, why would you think that their tax returns are true or false?

    Because politicians can’t be sent to jail for promising that they’ll “cut taxes, increase military spending, and balance the budget”, but they can for claiming that they gave $6M to veterans’ charities when it was only half that.

    It would be more than a little embarrassing if some asset Trump valued $513M in his FEC report turned out to be generating only $50K/year in revenues…

  28. avatar
    Scientist May 18, 2016 at 7:27 am #

    trader jack: I send in about $3-500 over my calculated taxes and let them refund any money that they want as they pay better than the bank for the time they hold the money.

    The IRS pays no interest regardless of how long they hold your money. Bank rates are certainly low these days, but if your bank pays less than zero, you should look for a new bank.

  29. avatar
    Scientist May 18, 2016 at 7:28 am #

    RanTalbott: Because politicians can’t be sent to jail for promising that they’ll “cut taxes, increase military spending, and balance the budget”, but they can for claiming that they gave $6M to veterans’ charities when it was only half that.

    It would be interesting if campaign promises were made under penalty of perjury, wouldn’t it?

  30. avatar
    Curious George May 18, 2016 at 10:20 am #

    Rickey: There’s no need to go from one extreme to another. No one is suggesting that Romney did anything illegal, but it points out that there is something seriously deficient about a tax system in which a person whose annual income is $21 million pays a lower tax rate than most middle class workers.

    Unfortunately, that’s one of the flaws of our tax system as it pertains to the average wage earner. I suspect that Mitt Romney is very pleased with the tax system as it is.

  31. avatar
    Loren May 18, 2016 at 10:43 am #

    Dr. Conspiracy:
    I don’t think irregularities are the issue. The questions are 1) Does Trump pay a lower tax rate than other less wealthy Americans? 2) Is Trump not as rich as he claims to be? 3) Does he exploit tax loopholes to shelter income from taxes? The likely answer to all of those questions is “yes” and a reason that Trump hasn’t released his returns. The audit issue is a non starter. Why would it make any difference?

    Personally, I’m inclined to agree with those saying that it’s probably #2. For one thing, Trump has all but flat-out ADMITTED that he pays the lowest-possible tax rate he can, so he’s already laying the groundwork to spin that to his advantage.

    Meanwhile, the one journalist who has actually SEEN Trump’s tax returns says that they don’t support Trump’s claims of his net worth. Indeed, in the lawsuit where Trump was suing the journalist who claimed he wasn’t worth as much as he claims, Trump repeatedly refused to produce un-redacted tax returns that would permit the defense to gauge his net worth.

    http://www.vox.com/2016/5/14/11671650/how-rich-is-trump

  32. avatar
    Reality Check May 18, 2016 at 10:53 am #

    Actually he did duck a debate.

    Scientist: It’s not a legal requirement to debate either.Would you give him a pass if he ducked those too?

  33. avatar
    J.D. Sue May 18, 2016 at 11:56 am #

    trader jack: No one really likes to talk ,, or show, information about their financial situation?

    —-
    Actually, Trump loves to talk about his purported financial situation.

    And he is proposing changes to the tax code.

    According to Trump, he knows more about taxes and not paying them than anyone. I’d like to see how he does it and how he would fare under his proposals.

  34. avatar
    Rickey May 18, 2016 at 12:17 pm #

    Curious George: Unfortunately, that’s one of the flaws of our tax system as it pertains to the average wage earner. I suspect that Mitt Romney is very pleased with the tax system as it is.

    I’m sure that he is, but the fact that he released his tax returns at least brought the issue to public attention.

    I wonder how many people know that individuals in the highest tax bracket pay only a 20% tax rate on their dividend income.

    As far as Trump is concerned, I would be interested in seeing how much he gives in charitable contributions. That would tell us something about his character.

  35. avatar
    Scientist May 18, 2016 at 1:37 pm #

    Loren: Meanwhile, the one journalist who has actually SEEN Trump’s tax returns says that they don’t support Trump’s claims of his net worth. Indeed, in the lawsuit where Trump was suing the journalist who claimed he wasn’t worth as much as he claims, Trump repeatedly refused to produce un-redacted tax returns that would permit the defense to gauge his net worth.

    http://www.vox.com/2016/5/14/11671650/how-rich-is-trump

    For someone in Trump’s situation, it’s actually difficult to tell his net worth even if you had his tax returns over many years. His assets are held by various corporate entities, which he owns, as are the liabilities. If they are C corporations (which is likely) profits and losses don’t show up on his personal returns. He can pay himself a salary of his own choosing and issue dividends as he sees fit (with some limitations). The tax returns of the various corporations he functions under would be more informative. Even there, judging the worth of his properties is difficult, since each is unique. It’s a different story from someone like Warren Buffett or Bill Gates, who own publicly-traded shares. That was largely the case with Romney as well.

  36. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy May 18, 2016 at 2:47 pm #

    And not just dividends! Capitol gains are also maxed out at 20%. So basically a filthy rich person who has no wages, and makes all his money from investments, pays a lower tax rate than someone in the $37,651–$91,150 tax bracket who works for a living (25% marginal tax bracket).

    Rickey: I wonder how many people know that individuals in the highest tax bracket pay only a 20% tax rate on their dividend income.

  37. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy May 18, 2016 at 3:14 pm #

    The best I was able to determine, if the IRS holds your money beyond their processing standards, then they pay interest, and the number 4% has been mentioned. So if you file electronically, and the IRS doesn’t pay your refund within 45 days, it appears that they will start paying interest on day 46. However, if you just pay them way too much, and then it’s refunded in a timely manner, then there is no interest paid. Or if you file an amended return a year later claiming, say more deductions, you won’t get interest on that refund unless it’s late in coming, and then the interest only starts when they should have paid it.

    Scientist: The IRS pays no interest regardless of how long they hold your money. Bank rates are certainly low these days, but if your bank pays less than zero, you should look for a new bank

  38. avatar
    Curious George May 18, 2016 at 3:54 pm #

    Rickey: I’m sure that he is, but the fact that he released his tax returns at least brought the issue to public attention.

    I wonder how many people know that individuals in the highest tax bracket pay only a 20% tax rate on their dividend income.

    As far as Trump is concerned, I would be interested in seeing how much he gives in charitable contributions. That would tell us something about his character.

    Charitable contributions would be very interesting to see.

  39. avatar
    Curious George May 18, 2016 at 7:54 pm #

    This information was released by Trump today with new financial filings.

    “The newly filed PFD shows a tremendous cash flow, and a revenue increase of approximately $190 million dollars (which does not include dividends, interest, capital gains, rents and royalties). This income was utilized, among other things, for the funding of construction projects at various multi-million dollar developments, reduction of debt and the funding of the campaign.”

    The press release adds that Trump’s net worth is more than $10 billion dollars and his income is reportedly “in excess of $557 million (which does not include dividends, interest, capital gains, rents and royalties).”

    (Source: Breitbart 5/18/16)

  40. avatar
    trader jack May 18, 2016 at 8:41 pm #

    Scientist: The IRS pays no interest regardless of how long they hold your money.Bank rates are certainly low these days, but if your bank pays less than zero, you should look for a new bank.

    I beg to differ with you as I had to declare the $16 interest payment that the made to me last year on this years tax forms I sent in.
    And they sent me a letter telling me I had to do that.

  41. avatar
    CarlOrcas May 18, 2016 at 8:45 pm #

    Dr. Conspiracy:
    And not just dividends! Capitol gains are also maxed out at 20%. So basically a filthy rich person who has no wages, and makes all his money from investments, pays alower tax rate than someone in the $37,651–$91,150 tax bracket who works for a living (25% marginal tax bracket).

    My guess, and it’s just that, is that most of his real estate deals are LLC’s (limited liability corporations) with the income, expenses, profits flowing through to the shareholders and reported on their personal tax returns (lots of variations but that’s simple enough for this post). It also shields those entities from public disclosure via state rules that apply to regular corporations.

    Not sure where I saw it but one story indicated Trump was involved in more than 100 LLC’s at any given time. Some are making money, some aren’t, blah blah.

    The end result, I suspect, is that Mr. Trump pays a pittance in taxes at the end of the day.

  42. avatar
    trader jack May 18, 2016 at 8:51 pm #

    I am all for a person making as much money as possible. Every thing they make increases the GDP of the
    USA. and all of the money contributes to the economy of the USA.

    I was discussing that with democratic staff member who was sure that they should not have so much money, and I simply told him that all of the money that is excess to needs is usually invested somewhere so that the money would be producing income and providing jobs and benefits for other lower income people.

    the use of your credit card is possible because someone with excess funds has money in an organization that funds the credit card company , and without that funding you could not have the use of a credit card.

    That may have all changed now with the free money from the FED,LOL

  43. avatar
    Rickey May 19, 2016 at 12:53 am #

    CarlOrcas: My guess, and it’s just that, is that most of his real estate deals are LLC’s (limited liability corporations) with the income, expenses, profits flowing through to the shareholders and reported on their personal tax returns (lots of variations but that’s simple enough for this post). It also shields those entities from public disclosure via state rules that apply to regular corporations.

    Not sure where I saw it but one story indicated Trump was involved in more than 100 LLC’s at any given time. Some are making money, some aren’t, blah blah.

    The end result, I suspect, is that Mr. Trump pays a pittance in taxes at the end of the day.

    Currently there are 150 active corporations in New York State which have the word “Trump” in the corporate name. Of course, not all of them are the Donald’s companies.

    One which caught my eye is “The Blacks for Trump, Inc.” which was incorporated in Staten Island last August.

  44. avatar
    Crustacean May 19, 2016 at 1:10 pm #

    That’s a good guess, Carl. A minor point of correction, though: LLC stands for limited liability company, not corporation. An LLC can be taxed as a partnership or a corporation. And even if it’s taxed as a corp, it could be an S-corp or a C-corp. The net income of an S-corp does flow through to the shareholders (Forms K-1), but if it’s taxed as a C-corp, there is no flow-through. In that case, I think the connection to the shareholders’ personal tax returns would only be whatever W-2 wages they earned, and thus would provide little information as to the success, or lack thereof, of the LLC.

    CarlOrcas: My guess, and it’s just that, is that most of his real estate deals are LLC’s (limited liability corporations) with the income, expenses, profits flowing through to the shareholders and reported on their personal tax returns (lots of variations but that’s simple enough for this post).

  45. avatar
    CarlOrcas May 19, 2016 at 1:58 pm #

    Crustacean: That’s a good guess, Carl. A minor point of correction, though: LLC stands for limited liability company, not corporation.

    Yes!

    It’s been a few years since I had to deal with such things; they joys of retirement!

  46. avatar
    RanTalbott May 19, 2016 at 3:04 pm #

    Curious George: his income is reportedly “in excess of $557 million (which does not include dividends, interest, capital gains, rents and royalties).”

    Meanwhile, Fortune reports that the numbers in that report are “revenues”, not “income”, and don’t tell us what his actual net income was.

    They also say the revenue figures cast considerable doubt on his net worth claims.

  47. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy May 19, 2016 at 10:11 pm #

    GDP is a measure of production. People whose income is from investments produce nothing, and do not add to GDP.

    trader jack: I am all for a person making as much money as possible. Every thing they make increases the GDP of the
    USA. and all of the money contributes to the economy of the USA.

  48. avatar
    Scientist May 20, 2016 at 8:05 am #

    Dr. Conspiracy: GDP is a measure of production. People whose income is from investments produce nothing, and do not add to GDP.

    That actually isn’t so:

    GDP = C + G + I + NX

    where

    C is equal to all private consumption, or consumer spending, in a nation’s economy, G is the sum of government spending, I is the sum of all the country’s investment, including businesses capital expenditures and NX is the nation’s total net exports, calculated as total exports minus total imports (NX = Exports – Imports).

    Investors provide the capital for the “I” in the equation.

  49. avatar
    trader jack May 20, 2016 at 2:39 pm #

    And that is why

    And that is why the GDP rises when the government prints money and makes the market go up, and why the President says that the economy is great, and the middle class loses out of the benefits..

    Just check out Market Ticker if you doubt the evidence. although you might not believe in Karl Denniger.

    gdp

  50. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy May 20, 2016 at 10:33 pm #

    The formula you gave is part of a method for estimating GDP making certain assumptions about how those variables equal production. However, the “I” is investment, not income from investment.

    The “Income” estimate assumes that all the money spent domestically equals what is produced (and that includes what is invested).

    Scientist: Investors provide the capital for the “I” in the equation.