Holding Steady: Forbes List Update

September 27, 2012 | 10 comments
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Feel like you’re treading water financially? I don’t suppose it will help to know that the wealth of the richest Mormons is also not growing? Perhaps not, but my analysis shows this to be the case. To be honest it’s hard to even think that they are put out!

As I’ve done with each of the major Forbes lists of the wealthy, below I’ve compiled a summary of the Mormons who appear on the list of the world’s billionaires that Forbes published last month.

This time the Mormons on the list have declined in rank since I last looked at them in May, even though their net worth, in total, stayed level. Two of the five Mormons on the list saw their wealth decrease over the past six months, perhaps because of the stagnant economy, while only one of the other three, Richard Marriott, saw his net worth increase.

Here’s the list as it now stands from Forbes:

#120 – Steven Udvar-Házy $3.3 billion (down from $3.4 billion in May)

#150 – James Jannard $2.8 billion (down from $3.0 billion in May)

#239 – Richard Peery $2.0 billion (up from $1.9 billion in May)

#764 – Richard Marriott $1.9 billion (up from $1.7 billion in May)

#804 – J. Willard (Bill) Marriott $1.6 billion (same as in May)

These changes are generally due to changes in the values of stock and real estate holdings, which have seen significant changes in the current uncertain economy. Observers should recognize that in most cases this wealth represents assets that aren’t liquid and can’t easily be used or donated without significant complications (decline in stock value when too much is sold, loss of control, etc.) and charitable criticisms of any accumulated wealth should recognize these complications.

This list is based on Forbes’ list of the 400 Richest Americans, where as May’s list was based on its list of the world’s billionaires. This list is merely to point out the connection of these individuals with Mormonism and isn’t meant to suggest anything about them or the propriety of accumulated wealth.

For what its worth, the following Mormon families and individuals have been on the Forbes lists in the past, or have been suggested as those who might be on the list, but are not on the list at the moment:

  • Jon Huntsman family
  • James L. Sorensen family
  • Roger W. Sant
  • David R. Huber
  • Frank L. Vandersloot

I’ve added the list above so that I can catch them if they show up on the list again. Other suggestions are welcome.

[In May 2011 I addressed whether or not we should care about who are on these lists. If you object to this, please read that post first before commenting -- I don't see the point in repeating what was said then. The previous list (in May) can be found here.]

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10 Responses to Holding Steady: Forbes List Update

  1. Frank Pellett on September 27, 2012 at 4:10 pm

    Romney is not on the list?

  2. Sam Brunson on September 27, 2012 at 4:27 pm

    Not even close. The people at the bottom of the list are worth $1.1 billion. Romney’s net worth is less than a quarter of that. It’s real money, of course, but it’s not Forbes 400 money.

  3. deep sea on September 27, 2012 at 5:10 pm

    Bloomberg on Romney’s missed financial opportunities:
    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-09-20/romney-with-fortune-missed-private-equity-boom-worth-billions.html

    there’s also the Swiss Mormon billionaire banker, Alfred Gantner.

  4. Kent Larsen on September 27, 2012 at 6:34 pm

    deep sea, thanks for the link and the suggestion. Can I ask how you know that Gantner is Mormon? I’ll research it, but I’d prefer to have some indication that this isn’t just another one of those “Steve Martin” rumors!

    And, for everyone else, let’s NOT turn this into an indepth discussion of Romney’s income. deep sea’s information shows why he isn’t on the list. That’s helpful. Beyond that I’m not sure that it works for this post.

  5. Tim on September 27, 2012 at 6:39 pm

    I found this with a pretty quick google search: http://rsc.byu.edu/archived/finding-god-byu/12-knocking-door

  6. Kent Larsen on September 27, 2012 at 6:40 pm

    OK, deep sea, you are right that Gantner is Mormon (see http://rsc.byu.edu/archived/finding-god-byu/12-knocking-door).

    BUT, he doesn’t seem to be on either the Forbes 400 richest Americans list or the Forbes Billionaires list, so while he is undoubtedly wealthy, he isn’t in the range of those on the above list.

  7. H.Bob on September 28, 2012 at 6:37 am

    Given Jon Huntsman, Sr.’s stated desire to “die broke,” he may not make the list ever again.

  8. Jan on September 28, 2012 at 7:24 am

    Maybe I’m odd man out, but I am not overly impressed with someone, member or not, being on this list. I am interested, however, with how people make their money, how it affects their behavior, what they do with their money. If Jon Huntsman wants to die broke, maybe his heart is in the right place. One can only imagine a conversation between Jesus and someone who died with a billion dollars in the bank.

  9. Kent Larsen on September 28, 2012 at 8:09 am

    Jan, I think you are right. We often assume that lists like this are meant to praise those on it. That is NOT my purpose. I don’t think you will find anything above that indicates praise of those on the list.

    Please note the final reference:

    “In May 2011 I addressed whether or not we should care about who are on these lists. If you object to this, please read that post first before commenting — I don’t see the point in repeating what was said then. …”

    Because of the status of these individuals in society, I think it is worth monitoring what is known about them…

  10. Deep sea on September 28, 2012 at 9:13 am

    Kent, you’re right. Gantner’s net worth appears to be in the 600-700 million $ range. Give him a few more years.