Caleb Melby and Bill Allison
New York: Donald Trump disclosed making more than $US528.9 million ($694 million) – a number that appears to mix total revenue with income – over 15½ months, including his first three months as US President.
The number includes almost $US20 million from Trump’s Washington DC hotel, according to a 98-page financial-disclosure document released by the federal Office of Government Ethics Friday evening. The report, which presents an imperfect window into Trump’s assets, debt and income, is the third of its kind released since he announced his candidacy in 2015.
The release comes as Trump is under investigation by special counsel Robert Mueller, a probe that’s tied to larger federal investigations into Russian interference in the 2016 election and whether Trump campaign advisers colluded in any interference. By law, Trump could have postponed releasing the disclosure until 2018.
“President Trump welcomed the opportunity to voluntarily file his personal financial disclosure form,” the White House press secretary’s office said in an emailed statement. The disclosure was certified by the federal ethics agency, according to the statement.
The form lists at least six new entities as assets that were formed over the past year, including DT Marks Vancouver, for which Trump listed more than $US5 million in royalties, and DT Tower Kolkata, for which he listed royalties of as much as $US1 million. They’re affiliated with Trump-branded developments in Canada and India.
Overall, six Trump properties that the President has visited since taking office brought in roughly $US132.7 million, the disclosure shows. Those include his Mar-a-Lago Club in Palm Beach, Florida, which doubled its members’ annual dues to $US200,000. It generated $US37 million during the reporting period, an increase from the $US30 million that Trump reported last year.
The Trump International Hotel in Washington, which opened in September, listed hotel-related revenue of $US19.7 million, according to the form.
Officials must disclose values on the form in ranges that top out at $US50 million. Trump valued 22 of his holdings at $US50 million or more.
His disclosure of at least $US528.9 million in income is probably inflated. For many of Trump’s properties, specifically golf courses and resorts, Trump lists revenue, rather than income, masking their profitability. His companies are required to file annual reports for three golf courses in Ireland and Scotland. Those reports show those three ventures run in the red.
The disclosure reflects income of between $US2.5 million and $US15.5 million from stocks, bonds and mutual funds. Trump sold all of his stocks in June 2016, a spokesman said in December. Trump also disclosed three checking and savings accounts holding a total of at least $US57 million.
The ranges listed for liabilities were largely unchanged from prior disclosures. The document shows Trump refinanced one $US7 million loan with Ladder Capital Finance, a commercial mortgage lender that has been one of his preferred partners over the last five years.
The document also shows that Trump has less than $US1 million in bonds to be paid for 6 East 57th St, a Manhattan retail property that houses a Niketown store.
Trump drew scrutiny and criticism after he departed from roughly 40 years of tradition for major-party candidates by declining to release any of his tax returns. He has said he’s under audit, and won’t release the documents until the audit is over.
Tax experts say there’s no law that would prevent releasing his returns, even while audits are pending. His spokesmen have also noted the extensiveness of his financial disclosures.
The President has retained his ownership interest in his various companies – another departure from tradition. Unlike previous occupants of the Oval Office, Trump neither divested his assets nor set up a blind trust.
Instead, on January 17, 2017, three days before his inauguration, Trump transferred his far-flung holdings to a revocable trust managed by his adult sons, Donald Jr and Eric, and Allen Weissberg, chief financial officer of the Trump Organisation.
Also in January, he resigned from 476 businesses, including companies active in Brazil, Canada and China, according to a document released by the Trump Organisation.
Trump has repeatedly denied having any financial ties to Russia, and the documents are unlikely to reflect any. In the filing, Trump mostly lists limited liability corporations and partnerships that he owns. He isn’t required to list where the entities derive their income.