After sourcing and corroborating tax returns from 1984-1994, the Times reports that Trump lost $1.17 billion dollars among his core businesses in the decade covered by the unearthed returns.
While the returns don't overlap with the years that currently concern Congress, namely the ones leading up to his 2016 election and the possible conflicts of interest they might point to, they do poke a hole in the picture of a savvy executive that Trump rode to reality TV fame and, eventually, the presidency.
In what seems like an attempt to head off Trump countering that the massive losses were typical of anyone doing business at his level, the Times pointed out that two of the years covered made Trump out to be the single biggest financial loser in the United States.
"Mr. Trump appears to have lost more money than nearly any other individual American taxpayer," the paper explained. "[Trump's] core business losses in 1990 and 1991 — more than $250 million each year — were more than double those of the nearest taxpayers in the I.R.S. information for those years."
The report also contrasts Trump's return with his father's, noting that Fred Trump reported income of over $50 million during the years that his son was losing half a billion dollars. The NYT previously reported that Trump received the equivalent of $413 million (in 2018 dollars) from his dad.
Charles J. Harder, a lawyer for the president, said that the tax information the Times uncovered was “demonstrably false,” adding that the reporting “about the president’s tax returns and business from 30 years ago [is] highly inaccurate.”