Home Business Economy & Politics White House Releases Details of Personal Finances of Wealthy Staffers

White House Releases Details of Personal Finances of Wealthy Staffers

According to recently released White House documents, its senior staff held millions of dollars in assets.

The White House financial disclosure also detail salaries of several other high-profile figures in the administration.

Ivanka Trump and her husband, Jared Kushner, have assets valued between $240 million and $740 million.

That includes a stake in Trump International Hotel, which earned Ivanka Trump between $1 million and $5 million in 2016.

Ethics regulations require such financial disclosures for staff working in the White House. The documents show income and assets at the time they started working for the US government – before any assets were sold or disposed of.

Neither President Donald Trump nor VP Mike Pence were part of the disclosure release, which came on March 31.

The documents, which have been uploaded online, list asset values within a range, rather than giving precise figures.

Among the revelations include financial data about: Steve Bannon, now a senior White House adviser, was paid $191,000 in consulting fees by conservative media outlet Breitbart, in addition to at least $1 million in other employment income; Sean Spicer, the White House press secretary, was paid $260,000 for his role as chief strategist and communications director at the Republican National Committee, and holds several real estate assets; Kellyanne Conway, Trump’s campaign chief turned advisor, earned more than $800,000, mostly for consulting services, including Donald Trump’s campaign;  Gary Cohn, head of the White House National Economic Council and a former Goldman Sachs president, has assets worth at least $230 million – but potentially more, as many of his assets are simply listed as worth “over $1m”. The White House said Gary Cohn resigned from all his positions at Goldman Sachs.

Image source Nordstrom

In a briefing before the release, White House officials stressed that “these are not the current holdings that everyone has today. These are the holdings that everybody had at the time when they came into office”.

Potential conflicts of interest may have already been eliminated.

Reuters quoted a White House official as saying about 25% of President Trump’s administration staff were classified as having “extremely complex” filings, indicating they were very wealthy.

They appeared much wealthier than officials in previous administrations, including Barack Obama’s White House.

According to Bloomberg’s estimation, President Trump’s cabinet and senior staff are worth some $12 billion.

Since Donald Trump’s election in November, the president’s own business empire has been scrutinized by ethics experts – who say it poses major conflicts of interest.

Fears have been raised that interest groups or foreign governments might stay at the luxury Trump hotel in Washington in a bid to win the administration’s favor.

Donald Trump’s two oldest sons now control his extensive assets, but watchdogs have complained that the arrangements are insufficient to avoid conflicts.

The Office of Government Ethics has urged President Trump either to divest fully, or to set up a blind trust for his assets.

Donald Trump has also refused to release his tax returns, breaking with a long-held tradition.