Trump hits back at bombshell New York Times report exposing he lost $1 billion over a decade, claiming 'almost all real estate developers' did the same thing

Ted Thai/The LIFE Picture Collection/Getty ImagesDonald Trump in Central Park in 1986, during the period when a New York Times investigation found his businesses were recording enormous losses.
  • President Donald Trump has hit back at a New York Times article that found his businesses lost a staggering $US1 billion over a decade.
  • “Real estate developers in the 1980’s & 1990’s, more than 30 years ago, were entitled to massive write offs and depreciation which would, if one was actively building, show losses and tax losses in almost all cases,” the president tweeted.
  • “You always wanted to show losses for tax purposes….almost all real estate developers did – and often re-negotiate with banks, it was sport,” he added.
  • In its article, citing records from the Internal Revenue Service, The Times said, “Year after year, Mr. Trump appears to have lost more money than nearly any other individual American taxpayer.”
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President Donald Trump in a series of tweets early Wednesday hit back at a bombshell New York Times report that found Trump’s businesses lost $US1.17 billion from 1985 to 1994.

In the tweets, Trump claimed that real-estate developers in the 1980s and 1990s would record massive losses for “tax purposes,” a practice he characterised as a “sport.”

“Real estate developers in the 1980’s & 1990’s, more than 30 years ago, were entitled to massive write offs and depreciation which would, if one was actively building, show losses and tax losses in almost all cases,” he tweeted. “Much was non monetary. Sometimes considered ‘tax shelter,’ you would get it by building, or even buying. You always wanted to show losses for tax purposes….almost all real estate developers did – and often re-negotiate with banks, it was sport. Additionally, the very old information put out is a highly inaccurate Fake News hit job!”

Citing tax records it had obtained, The Times on Tuesday evening reported that Trump’s network of businesses, including hotels and casinos, suffered cumulative losses of more than $US1 billion during the nine years.

“Year after year, Mr. Trump appears to have lost more money than nearly any other individual American taxpayer,” The Times said, citing records from the Internal Revenue Service.

Trump in 2016 became the first president since Gerald Ford to refuse to release his tax returns, saying he is unable to do so while they are under IRS audit. The IRS, however, has said there is no law against people releasing tax returns while being audited.

During the nine years Trump made the losses reported by The Times, he was forging his reputation as a New York tycoon – with his best-seller “The Art of the Deal” published in 1987.

Trump’s reputation as a real-estate dealmaker was central to his pitch for the presidency in 2016.

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