Back in 2014 the Buffalo Bills were for sale, and Donald Trump wanted them. To make it seem as if he were wealthy enough to take out a loan to buy the team, Trump gave executives at Deutsche Bank a financial statement showing his net worth was $8.7 billion. That was a hefty 72% jump from the year before.
How did his fortune grow so fast? Trump did it by adding a new line to his financial statement that he called “brand value.” He said it amounted to $4 billion.
“It was my experience that Mr. Trump inflated his total assets when it served his purposes, such as trying to be listed among the wealthiest people in Forbes,” Cohen said, “and deflated his assets to reduce his real estate taxes.”