You’re Most Likely to ‘Bump’ Into a Billionaire in…Wyoming?
The sweeping prairies and majestic mountainscapes of Wyoming aren't the first place you'd imagine a billionaire living. No doubt, the soaring skyscrapers and bustling backdrop of New York or Los Angeles come to mind. But, according to new data from The Digital Project Manager, Wyoming is the state you're most likely to bump into a billionaire.
You read that right. The least populated state in the union houses the most billionaires per capita. The research "analyzed the top 100 richest people from the US, what states they are from, and the population of each state to establish which states are home to the most successful people," reports On Focus News.
Based on the research findings, the Equality State boasts 3.47 billionaires per one million people...which is quite impressive considering our state population sits under one million. Wyoming is currently estimated to be home to 584,057 residents (U.S. Census Bureau)
Why would folks rolling in the Benjamins choose to settle in Wyoming, where we like keeping the glitz and glitter of Hollywood and NYC well and far away? I'd bank on a few reasons spurring their decision: First, no state income tax means more money kept in their pockets. Second, less people means less press and, theoretically, fewer folks who know their name.
The New York Post cited tax incentives as a primary factor in the immigration of the wealthy to Wyoming, reporting that Wyoming "collects no personal or corporate income tax, and it has one of the nation’s lowest sales tax rates (5.36 percent, compared to 8.49 percent in New York)."
The publication interviewed author Justin Farrell in 2020 about the phenomena. Farrell confirmed that the wealthy have flocked to Wyoming for a sense of 'normalcy,' based on interviews he conducted for his book 'Billionaire Wilderness.'
Naturally, a vast majority of Wyoming's wealthy are reported to live in the resort region of Teton County - a place many 'regular' Wyomingites view as the state's equivalent to Bel Air in Los Angeles or the Hamptons in New York. And it's true, you're more likely to run into a billionaire in Jackson than you are in most of the state - though, you'll find the ultra-rich living it up in other cities, including Casper and Cody.
Who Are the Ultra-Wealthy Elite Living in Wyoming?
The list of billionaires living in Wyoming is no doubt longer than we can imagine, but if Farrell's interview with the New York Post is anything to judge by, most of the state's loaded population doesn't care to reveal their presence. They come here for anonymity.
However, Wyoming has its fair share of wealthy residents in the public eye, several of whom stand as some of the wealthiest individuals in the world. As of April 2023, analytics publisher Stacker reports five billionaires residing in Wyoming.
Amy Wyss resides in Wilson, WY. She is a philanthropist and heiress to the Synthes Holding AG medical equipment empire. Forbes reports her net worth at $2 billion and ranks her as the 1,560 wealthiest person in the world as of January 2, 2024.
B. Wayne Huges Jr. resides in Jackson. His wealth comes from the storage facility company Public Storage and real estate management. Forbes cites his net worth as $1.9 billion and the 1,443 wealthiest person as of January 2, 2024.
J. Joe Ricketts resides in Little Jackson Hole in Sublette County, Wyoming. Ricketts is a 'self-made' billionaire, according to Stacker. His wealth, garnered from his brokerage firm Ameritrade, is cited at $3.9 billion by Forbes as of January 2, 2024. Ricketts is ranked as the 771 wealthiest person in the world by Forbes.
Christy Walton, heiress to the Walmart fortune, is Wyoming's second-wealthiest billionaire resident. She resides in Jackson. Her net worth is around 11.5 billion as of January 2, 2024, and she is the 163 wealthiest person in the world, according to Forbes. Ironically, Jackson does not have a Walmart - though it is home to a branch of its major competitor, Target.
John Mars is the heir to one sweet empire - literally. Mars Incorporated creates some of the world's most famous treats, including Snickers and M&Ms. The company also has a stake in the pet care and food industry, producing pet brands like Pedigree and Whiskas and major brands in the food industry like Ben's Original and Dolmio.
Mars' net worth sits at around 38.7 billion as of January 2, 2024, reports Forbes. He is ranked as the 34th wealthiest person in the world.