If you’re looking for a finance expert with a lot of experience and plenty of controversial opinions to share, Jim Rickards just might be your guy. Jim Rickards’ net worth is $19 million as of 2023 and makes an estimated $4 million in annual income from various ventures.
Unlike many people with this level of wealth, Rickards earned a lot of his money the old-fashioned way, through holding many senior jobs in the finance world.
On the whole, it’s not all that surprising that Rickards wields considerable power in that world. He’s advised the Department of Defense and the American intelligence community about global finance matters, and he’s also consulted for major hedge funds.
Rickards has a unique political background, too. He was a part of the plan to release American hostages in Iran, and was a key figure in the 1987 stock market crash. Throw in a bond trading scandal in 1991 and the collapse of Drexel that occurred a year before that, and you’re talking about a man who clearly doesn’t mind courting controversy and dealing with potential disasters.
It’s been an interesting journey for sure. Rickards graduated from Johns Hopkins University with honors, and also has a master’s degree in international economics. That already gives him lots of letters after his name, but just for good measure, Rickards threw in a pair of law degrees, one pertaining specifically to taxation issues.
He’s also held senior positions at Citibank and LTCM (Long Term Capital Management), and he’s been a senior director at a merchant bank and consulting firm that gathers marketing intelligence information. One of the primary pivot points in Rickards’ career occurred when he was the chief negotiator in the LTCM bailout, which was sponsored by the Federal Reserve.
He also testified before a congressional committee after the subprime collapse in 2008, and identified several flaws in financial modeling that helped contribute to that collapse. In addition, Rickards was a major player in the first iteration of the Pentagon’s financial war games, which were held at a top-secret facility.
Opinion-wise, Rickards has made his bones as a major critic of the US financial system, which he maintains will collapse again because of intrinsic flaws that are built into the system.
He’s also no friend of Bitcoin. Rickards is on record as saying the cryptocurrency has no real value, and considers it a very risky investment. He’s a big believer in gold, which isn’t exactly surprising given his conservative track record in the world of finance.
But not everything Rickards has done has come up sunshine and roses financially. He lost over 90% of his personal wealth when Long Term Capital collapsed, so he basically had to do a financial reset after that.
Rickards has also written a half dozen books about business and finance, some of which have been bestsellers. Now that he’s a card-carrying “old head,” he’s got a reputation in the financial community for gloom-and-doom predictions.
He keeps his private life very private and currently lives in New Hampshire. The only other personal note in his biography is a post on Twitter celebrating his 35th wedding anniversary.