The 10 Richest U.S. Presidents

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At the end of perhaps the most difficult elections in modern US political history, Donald Trump will become the 45th president. Regardless of your political persuasion, this is a remarkable event on several levels.

With our long-term philosophy, foolish investors know that the only way forward is to stay focused on buying and maintaining high-quality companies in the long run, and that would remain true, regardless of who wins the election. And speaking of money, now that Trump has won, he will become our richest president ever. So, let’s have some fun here at the end of an electoral cycle that has been anything but. Who are the 10 richest presidents in American history?


Estimated net worth

Donald J. Trump

$ 3.7 billion

John F. Kennedy

$ 1 billion

George Washington

$ 525 million

Thomas Jefferson

$ 212 million

Theodore Roosevelt

$ 125 million

Andrew Jackson

$ 119 million

James Madison

$ 101 million

Lyndon B. Johnson

$ 98 million

Bill Clinton

$ 80 million

Herbert Hoover

$ 75 million

Data sources: Forbes. 24/7 on Wall Street and CNBC.

Let me offer some qualifiers. The net worth value of each deceased president reflects his maximum projected dollar value for 2010. For every living ex-president, his measurements of wealth reflect his most recently updated estimate. Now, with that out of the way, let’s delve into our list of the richest presidents in US history.

10. Herbert Hoover: $ 75 million

The 31st president made most of his fortune as a mining executive. After graduating from the inaugural class at Stanford University, with a degree in geology, Hoover rose through the ranks of several mining companies in locations as diverse as California, Western Australia and China. Helping to found a company that would eventually become part of the publicly traded market Rio Tinto GroupHoover reportedly took control of mining operations on six continents, resulting in an immense fortune before the start of World War I and his eventual entry into political life.

9. Bill Clinton: $ 80 million

Clinton, who was younger than the average president in his office, has accumulated most of his personal and family wealth since leaving the Oval Office at age 54. After returning to private life, Clinton won huge sums in book and lecture deals. . He would have received a $ 15 million advance for his memories My life, and your booking fee as a public speaker looks good in six digits.

8. Lyndon B. Johnson: $ 98 million

Johnson grew up poor in rural Texas. Most of his wealth came from his wife, Claudia, popularly known as Lady Bird. In the 1940s and 1950s, Lady Bird invested part of her modest heritage in Texas’ first radio and TV stations. His initial investment of $ 41,000 ended up rising to $ 150 million. Historians have noted that Johnson almost certainly leveraged his political influence to help his family’s commercial interests, especially when he lobbied the FCC as a U.S. senator to grant his Austin TV shows exclusive rights to the Austin area.

7. James Madison: $ 101 million

Like many previous presidents, Madison derived most of its wealth from its extensive estates. However, although he was considered the largest landowner in Orange County, Virginia, during his lifetime, Madison left the presidency poorer than when he entered. At the end of his life, the decline in tobacco prices and mismanagement by relatives caused a strong financial strain on the Founding Father. Madison and his wife, Dolley, gradually sold their land and slaves from their plantations in Montpelier.

6. Andrew Jackson: $ 119 million

Hero of the Battle of New Orleans, the seventh president also gained considerable wealth by owning the Hermitage farm in Tennessee, from 1804 until his death in 1845. Although he was involved in other endeavors throughout his life, most of his wealth it came from the cotton produced at the Hermitage, which was grown by an increasing number of slaves who finally numbered several hundred.

5. Theodore Roosevelt: $ 125 million

Like his distant cousin, FDR, Teddy Roosevelt came from the prominent New York family and inherited the vast majority of his wealth. Unlike his father, a businessman, whom he idolized, Teddy was never interested in making money. Instead, he lived on the money he earned after his father’s death and entered politics at an early age, becoming one of the most famous presidents in US history.

4. Thomas Jefferson: $ 212 million

Jefferson inherited the land on which his Virginia plantation, Monticello, was built, which provided a great fortune for the third president. Totaling more than 5,000 acres, Monticello is today known for its architectural splendor. However, as in Madison, heavy debts plagued Jefferson later in life, forcing his family to sell the property in the years following the death of the great statesman.

3. George Washington: $ 525 million

The country’s first president benefited powerfully from the same Virginia planting tradition as Madison and Jefferson. More than 300 slaves worked on their huge 7,000-acre plantation, Mount Vernon. Washington’s holdings expanded to include parcels of land in the Ohio Valley, New York and the District of Columbia, in addition to other investments. However, like Madison and Jefferson, Washington is remembered today for its immense contribution to the Union, as opposed to its personal fortune.

2. John F. Kennedy: $ 1 billion

The second place ranking of JFK is based on something technical. Kennedy lived comfortably with the confidence of the family he shared with his brothers, but he never managed to inherit the enormous fortune that his father, Joseph P. Kennedy, amassed over his business career. The elder Kennedy’s involvement in a series of commercial transactions between banks, investments, entertainment and even smuggling helped provide the financial platform to create one of the most important political dynasties in American history.

1. Donald J. Trump: $ 3.7 billion

Although Trump is the richest president of all time, his campaign focused not on his wealth, but on his populist appeal. The president-elect’s personal net worth remains a matter of controversy, as he has not yet released his tax returns, so we are following the $ 3.7 billion estimate that Forbes produced earlier this year.

Paula Fonseca