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Obama's Net Worth--Latest Figures
August 23, 2008 (updated 12-10-2009)
By Michael P. Delhomme, Contributing Columnist
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[Editor's note: Obama's net worth has plummeted based on Federal financial  
disclosures made on May 14, 2013. These disclosures are discussed in the
updated to his net worth.]

How much is Barack Obama worth? We took a look at the tax
returns for 2008, 2007 and 2006 released by the Obama
campaign for 2000 through 2008 to get an idea. We have also
taken into account the money Obama was awarded for winnng
the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize.

To figure his net worth, we need to find out his assets and  
subtract his outstanding liabilities.

Obama's assets are cash, his house and a tiny amount of stocks.

1. House.  Obama lives in a house in Chicago on 5046 S.
Greenwood, zip code 60615, according to his 2006 returns. The
house has an estimated value of $1.5 million, if you take the
average of value of homes of the same size in the same zip code.

2. Cash. In 2007, Obama and his wife made $4,238,165
according to his 2007 tax returns. Only $260,735 came from
salaries and wages. The rest, over $4 million, came from his
book royalties from Random House ($3,278,719)  and  a
company called Dystel & Goderich ($815,971).

Now of course not all of that $4,238,165 in earnings will stick
around as an asset. They paid $1,059,826 in taxes. Ouch.  That
knocks them down to $3,080,139.  

And, like all of us, the Obamas must use some of that to pay
every day expenses-- light bill, school clothes, Hawaii vacations,
etc. Let's estimate that they spend about 20% of that total on
living expenses-- that would still give them $616,027 to burn
for living expenses and fun, or 51,335 as a monthly living
budget.  Sweet.

After these generous living expenses, they would have
$2,464,111 left over to invest. That's from 2007 alone.

In 2008, according to his tax returns, Obama made $2,736,107.
Of this amount, $201,913 represented wages, mostly from his
job as Senator from Illionois.  He earned 2, 479,648 from book
royalties.  According to a schedule to his 1040, Obama earned
$148,581 in income from foreign sources. The specific countries
are not listed. Obama paid $881,337 in taxes, leaving him with  
net after tax income of $1,854,770.

In 2009, which still has 20 days left, Obama's salary as
President is $400,000, plus a $50,000 tax free expense account,
a $100,000 tax free travel account and a $19,000 tax free
entertainment account.   Meals for the President and his family
and official state dinners are provided at taxpayer expense by
White House Food Services. Travel for official purposes is also
at taxpayer expense and is not counted as taxable income. All of
this means that, for practical purposes, Obama has very few
living expenses so it's reasonable to assume that nearly all of
his $1,854,770 after tax salary added to his growing net worth.

In addition, Obama won  10 million Swedish Kronor ($1.4
million at today's exchange rate) for the
2009 Nobel Peace
Prize. Norwegians actually award the prize but they calculate
the award based on the currency of Sweden, go figure.
According to CBS News, the White House has indicated that
Obama plans to give that money to charity. If he does,
mangoboss will subtract the $1. 4 million from his asset total.
For an
update on what really happened to the Nobel Prize
money, read here.  For now, the $1.4 million is still in Obama's
pockets. He'll have to pay taxes on that, which we estimate will
bite off $400,000 from the prize, leaving him with an extra $1
million in his bank account.

3. Interest and Dividends. Here's where we find some action.
The Obamas earned $1442 in taxable interest. Not much. But
here's the whopper. They earned $45,851 in tax free interest,
according to line 8b on their 2007 returns.  

The amount of cash that $45,851 related to depends on the tax
free bonds and accounts they invested in. But, for 2007, let's
assume that they earned the national average of somewhere
between 3% and 4% for tax free bonds. That would mean they
have a pile somewhere of between $1, 146,275 and
$1,528,366.  That makes sense when you remember that
Obama earned over $1.6 in book royalties in 2005. The tax-free
income could have come from that pile.  On his 2008 returns,
we see that the haul from tax-frees has gone down to $2936
but the haul from taxable government securities has gone up to
$18,890.  Extrapolating backwards, the $18,890 would
correlate to a principal of $944,500 at a 2% interest rate. The
tax free interest pile of $2936 would correlate to a principal of
$73,400.  That's a total pile of $1,017, 900.  Since Obama did
not disclose paying any campaign expenses from his pocket, it is
reasonable to assume that the pile he had at the end of 2007 is
still pretty much intact now but reallocated from tax-free
investments to other investments.

4. The 2009 Haul. Of course, the Obamas are still earning in
2009. You don't figure that the run for the Presidency has hurt
his book sales. We conservatively estimate that Obama will
make as much in 2009 as he did in 2008 and 2007. We rounded
the take to $3,500,000, based on the latest estimates of his
book sales in 2009. In all likelihood, Obama's historic run for
the Presidency has increased the total from 2007 even more but
we're being super-conservative. (
Editor's update: We were
right. Obama's book sales have in fact skyrockted since he
became President
. Read the actual 2009 Obama net worth
updated figures here.)

Now for the liabilities:

1. Home Mortgage. Not much here. The Obamas reported
$57,838 in mortgage interest in 2007 and a similar amount in
2008.  When they bought the house, they took out a mortgage
of $1.32 million from Northern Trust at an interest rate of
5.625%.  They also took out a second mortgage of $250,000.
Let's assume that they have paid none of the original principal
down on either of the loans. This assumption will maximize their
liabilities and hold down their net worth.

Article Continues Below

This is the extent of what we know about their liabilities. They
could of course have credit cards like most of us. They paid off
their school loans.

Grand Total Net Worth

Assets:    $1,500,000              (RealEstate)
$1,017,900                (Tax Free and taxable Bonds/securities)
$2,464,111                (2007 haul, net of everything)
$1,854,770                (2008 after tax income)
$1,000,000                (2009 Nobel Peace Prize, after taxes)
$3,500,000                (estimated net haul from book sales
in                                         2009.
Read the actual updated
$419,000                   (earnings from $400,000 salary,
plus                                         $169,000 tax free expense
accounts,                                              minus estimated school tuition
and                                              miscellaneous expenses of $150,000)

The Running Tally of Obama's Net Worth as of December 10,
Barack Obama 2009 Net Worth:

Total Assets: $10,255,781  
Total Liabilities $1,570,000

Barack Obama's estimated 2009 Net Worth: 8,685,781  (Read
the running tally of his current net worth, updated by White
House releases here)                            

Previous Year's (2008) Total

Total Assets: $8,610,386

Total Liabilities: $1,570,000

Barack Obama's  2008 Net Worth: $7,040,386

Sources: Tax Returns, 2008, 2007, 2000-2006 released by
Obama campaign and White House (2008 only)

Related: Obama's Net Worth-2013 Updates /Obama's Net
Worth-2011 Updates /Obama's Net Worth -2010 Updates
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Only $150,000 now but win or lose
estimates for Obama's back-end
money are massive. His may earn over
$100 million after he leaves office
President Bush and Sarkozy of France
(in car) and Gordon Brown of the U.K..
Bush has a net worth of between $20
and $30 million. That will balloon if he
joins the lucrative speech and book
circuit that have earned the Clintons
$109 million since Bill Clinton left office.
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