62 Percent of American Billionaires Are Self-Made
America’s uber rich have, overwhelmingly, climbed to the top on their own, according to a new report.
Of the 585 billionaires in the U.S., 363 -- or 62 percent -- made their fortunes themselves, says the report by Singapore-based market research company Wealth X in collaboration with Wall Street Journal’s Custom Studio. Another 105, or 18 percent, achieved the coveted billionaire status through a combination of inheritance and making their own wealth. The remaining 117 American billionaires inherited their wealth.
So, what do those American billionaires splurge on? Planes, yachts and art. Nearly one in five American billionaires own a private plane, while about one in 10 has a yacht, according to the report. Slightly less than one in 10 billionaires in the U.S. collect art and about one in 20 own a sports team.
While nearly 20 percent of these American billionaires made their wealth in financing, banking and investing, entrepreneurs are also well represented. According to a previous report from Wealth X, of the top 25 wealthiest self-made billionaires, 14 are American entrepreneurs.
Catherine Clifford is senior entrepreneurship writer at CNBC. She was formerly a senior writer at Entrepreneur.com, the small business reporter at CNNMoney and an assistant in the New York bureau for CNN. Clifford attended Columbia University where she earned a bachelor's degree. She lives in Brooklyn, N.Y. You can follow her on Twitter at @CatClifford.