Analysis: Obama's 'Genteel Poverty'
US President Barack Obama launched an attack ad on Monday that made barbed reference to GOP challenger Mitt Romney's millions, implying he is out of touch with the average American.
Its true: Mitt Romney's estimated net worth is a stratospheric $220 million.
But is Obama struggling alongside their fellow Americans in the limping US economy?
According to OpenSecret.Org, Obama's annual salary of $400,000 is more than any cabinet member's, but constitutes only some of the Obama’s personal wealth. The rest comes from his personal assets and investments.
Obama’s banks with JPMorgan Chase, where he had a checking account with less than $15,000 in it, and an asset management account worth between $250,000 and $500,000 in 2010.
He also had at least $200,000 invested in the Vanguard 500 Index, a mutual fund based on the performance of the Standard & Poor’s 500 index.
As of the end of 2010, Obama also held somewhere between $2.1 million and $10.2 million in the form of U.S. Treasury bills and notes.
In addition, his daughters Sasha and Malia could count on at least $200,000 for their college in the Bright Directions College Savings plan as of last year.
Analysts calculate Obama's net worth using both maximum values for each asset and liability, giving Obama an estimated net worth of $7.3 million when the two numbers are averaged.
Assets that don’t generate income, such as a politician’s primary residence or car, are not required to be disclosed. Further, only assets or liabilities worth more than $1,000 are reported by politicians.
Obama's millions may only be roughly 1/30th of Romney's fortune, but it’s over 30 times greater as the average American's net worth of $183,000.
What is more, the average American is carrying over 16,000 in debt, while almost all of their net worth is locked into their primary residence and vehicles. In other words, the average American is living from paycheck to paycheck.
Worse, while unemployment remains high at 8.2 percent, the median American salary dropped to $26,364, a mere fraction of Obama's $400,000.
Obama claims he can relate to the average American who’s struggling in the trenches in a way Mitt Romney can’t, but can they relate to Obama?