“I think if you look at people, whether in business or government, who haven’t had any moral compass, who’ve just changed to say whatever they thought the popular thing was, in the end they’re losers.”
Michael Rubens Bloomberg KBE (born February 14, 1942) is an American business magnate, politician, and philanthropist. He served as the 108th Mayor of New York City, holding office for three consecutive terms beginning with his first election in 2001. With a net worth of $38.5 billion, he is the 10th richest person in the United States and the 13th wealthiest in the world.
He is the founder, CEO and owner of Bloomberg L.P., the global financial data and media company that bears his name and is notable for its Bloomberg Terminal, which is widely used by investment professionals around the world.
Bloomberg began his career at the securities brokerage Salomon Brothers before forming his company in 1981 and spending the next twenty years as its chairman and CEO. He also served as chairman of the board of trustees at his alma mater Johns Hopkins University from 1996 to 2002. A Democrat before seeking elective office, Bloomberg switched his party registration in 2001 to run for mayor as a Republican. He defeated opponent Mark Green in a close election held just weeks after the September 11 terrorist attacks. Bloomberg won a second term in 2005 and left the Republican Party two years later. He campaigned to weaken the city’s term limits law and was elected to his third term in 2009 as an independent candidate on the Republican ballot line.
He was frequently mentioned as a possible candidate for the U.S. presidential elections in 2008, 2012, and 2016, and for New York Governor in 2010. He declined to seek either office, instead opting to continue serving as Mayor of New York. On January 1, 2014, Bill de Blasio succeeded Bloomberg as mayor of New York City. On September 3, 2014, after a brief stint as a full-time philanthropist, it was announced that Bloomberg would return to Bloomberg L.P. and re-assume the position of CEO at the end of 2014.
Michael Bloomberg was born at St. Elizabeth’s Hospital, in the Brighton neighborhood of Boston, on February 14, 1942. His family is Jewish. His father, William Henry Bloomberg (1906–1963), was a real estate agent and the son of Alexander “Elick” Bloomberg, animmigrant from Russia. His mother, Charlotte Rubens Bloomberg (January 2, 1909 – June 19, 2011), was a native of Jersey City, New Jersey. His maternal grandfather, Max Rubens, was an immigrant from present-day Belarus, then also part of Russia.
The family lived in Allston, Massachusetts, until Bloomberg was two years old. They moved to Brookline, Massachusetts, for the next two years, finally settling in Medford, a Boston suburb, where he lived until after he graduated from college. Bloomberg is anEagle Scout.
Bloomberg attended Johns Hopkins University, where he joined the fraternity Phi Kappa Psi. In 1962, as a sophomore, he conceived of and constructed the school’s mascot, the blue jay. He was inside the costume when it debuted at the Hopkins-Cornell lacrosse game that year. He graduated in 1964 with a Bachelor of Science degree in electrical engineering. In 1966 he graduated from Harvard Business School with a Master of Business Administration.
In 1973, Bloomberg became a general partner at Salomon Brothers, a bulge-bracket Wall Street investment bank, where he headed equity trading and, later, systems development. In 1981, Salomon Brothers was bought by Phibro Corporation, and Bloomberg was laid off from the investment bank and given a $10 million severance package. Using this money, Bloomberg went on to set up a company named Innovative Market Systems. His business plan was based on the realization that Wall Street (and the financial community generally) was willing to pay for high quality business information, delivered as quickly as possible and in as many usable forms possible, via technology (e.g., graphs of highly specific trends). In 1982, Merrill Lynch became the new company’s first customer, installing 22 of the company’s Market Master terminals and investing $30 million in the company. The company was renamed Bloomberg L.P. in 1987. By 1990, it had installed 8,000 terminals. Over the years, ancillary products including Bloomberg News, Bloomberg Message, and Bloomberg Tradebook were launched.
As of 2012, the company had more than 310,000 terminals worldwide. His company also has a radio network which currently has its flagship station as 1130 WBBR AM in New York City. He left the position of CEO to pursue a political career as the mayor of New York City. Bloomberg was replaced as CEO by Lex Fenwick. The company is now led by president Daniel L. Doctoroff, a former deputy mayor under Bloomberg.
In September 2013, Forbes reported Bloomberg’s wealth as $33 billion and ranked him as the 13th richest person in the world. In March 2012, Forbes reported Bloomberg’s wealth at $22 billion, ranking him 20th in the world and 11th in the United States. In March 2009, Forbes reported Bloomberg’s wealth at $16 billion, a gain of $4.5 billion over the previous year, enjoying the world’s biggest increase in wealth in 2009. At that time, there were only four fortunes in the U.S. that were larger (although the Wal-Mart family fortune is split among four people). He moved from 142nd to 17th in the Forbes list of the world’s billionaires in only two years (March 2007 – March 2009).