The American Dream has long been associated with financial success and prosperity, and over the years, the landscape of success stories has evolved to include an increasing number of black millionaires.

The topic of black wealth in America is both fascinating and inspiring, reflecting the remarkable achievements of individuals who have overcome historical challenges to amass significant wealth. 

But the question remains, how many black millionaires in America are there?

Find out the answer in this article.

Key Statistics

  • America has approximately 1.79 million black individuals who are millionaires
  • It is believed that William Alexander Leidesdorff was the first black millionaire in America
  • Robert Smith, currently the richest black man alive, possesses a net worth of $8 billion
  • In 2021, the number of millionaires increased by 5.2 million individuals
  • Black Americans holding a Bachelor’s degree have a 3% probability of becoming millionaires
  • Globally, there are only 16 black billionaires
  • Among all millionaires worldwide, the United States accounts for 21 million individuals, comprising 39% of the total
  • Approximately 19.5% of black Americans live below the poverty line

How Many Black Millionaires in America in 2024?

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How many black millionaires are there in America?

Recent statistics indicate that there are 1.79 million black millionaires in America.

The rise of black millionaires is not only a promising sign of financial empowerment but also an encouraging indicator of social progress. 

This development not only symbolizes individual achievements but also fosters the growth of strong role models within the black community, inspiring and motivating the next generation to reach even greater heights.

Efforts must continue to dismantle the remaining barriers and ensure equal access to opportunities for all aspiring entrepreneurs and professionals, regardless of their background.

American Millionaires by Ethnicity

From recent data, here’s a distribution of American millionaires by their ethnicity: 

  • 76% of millionaires in America are White
  • 8% of millionaires in America are Asian
  • 8% of millionaires in America are Black
  • 6.8% of millionaires in America are Hispanic/Latino

Who Is the First Black Millionaire?

William Alexander Leidesdorff (1810-1848), a Black immigrant from the Danish West Indies, is believed to have been America’s first Black millionaire.

He owned the first steamship in San Francisco Bay and established notable firsts, including California’s first public school, hotel, and waterfront warehouse.

His commerce and real estate ventures made him a millionaire when gold was discovered on his property during the California Gold Rush.

Although history has not always adequately recognized his contributions, William Leidesdorff remains an inspirational figure, his accomplishments reaching far beyond financial success.

His pioneering spirit and dedication to progress have left an enduring impact on the history of California and the United States, making him a true emblem of resilience and determination.

Who Is the Wealthiest Black American Alive?

In terms of wealth and success, few names shine as brightly as that of Robert F. Smith.

At 60 years old, this remarkable individual holds the distinguished title of being the wealthiest Black American, an achievement that underscores his exceptional entrepreneurial prowess.

Having amassed a staggering net worth of $8 billion, Robert F. Smith’s rise to the pinnacle of financial prosperity is nothing short of inspiring.

Ranking 266th among the world’s wealthiest individuals, his journey from humble beginnings to becoming a titan in the private equity domain is a testament to hard work and vision.

How Many People Become Millionaires Each Year in the US?


According to Credit Suisse’s latest annual wealth report, a staggering 5.2 million individuals attained the coveted millionaire status worldwide in 2021.

This represents the most significant increase in millionaire numbers recorded for any country in the 21st century. Notably, nearly half of these newly minted millionaires have found their home in the United States.

Black Americans’ Chances of Becoming Millionaires

The chances of Black Americans becoming millionaires with a Bachelor’s degree are limited to a mere 3%.

Education has long been proclaimed as the great equalizer, a powerful tool that can break the shackles of poverty and open doors to opportunity.

While this holds true for some, it is crucial to acknowledge that the playing field is far from level.

The 3% figure highlights a deeply entrenched wealth gap that persists despite strides towards racial equality.

There Are Only 16 Black Billionaires Worldwide

Out of the nearly 3,000 billionaires who possess astronomical fortunes, a mere 16 individuals identify as Black, comprising less than 1 percent of this exclusive group.

Such figures are a sad reminder of the barriers that still persist for underrepresented communities in the upper sectors of wealth.

Delving deeper into the numbers, a striking gender disparity emerges within this minority subset.

Among the 16 Black billionaires, only two are women, highlighting the dual challenges faced by both racial and gender minorities in breaking through the barriers to immense wealth.

Total Number of Millionaires in the United States

The United States stands as a true powerhouse of wealthy individuals, boasting a staggering 21,951,000 millionaires within its borders.

This vast number accounts for an impressive 39.1% of the world’s total millionaires, which tallies up to an astounding 56.1 million.

The exponential growth of millionaires in the U.S. signifies a profound shift in the country’s economic landscape, reflecting the nation’s prosperity and entrepreneurial spirit.

With a multitude of industries flourishing and innovation running rampant, the United States has established itself as a prime destination for wealth creation.

How Many Black Americans Are Below the Poverty Line?

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As of 2021, the poverty landscape in the United States presented a concerning picture, with significant disparities evident among racial groups.

According to available data, approximately 19.5% of Black individuals were living below the poverty line.

In contrast, the numbers stood at 8.2% for White people and 8.1% for Asian individuals.

These figures highlight the persistent economic inequalities that continue to plague different communities in the country.

The disparity in poverty rates among racial groups not only raises questions about the effectiveness of existing social and economic policies but also underscores the urgent need for interventions to address these imbalances.


In conclusion, the presence of how many black millionaires in America marks a significant stride towards financial empowerment and social advancement. 

This surge in black wealth not only celebrates individual accomplishments but also paves the way for influential role models who can inspire and guide the younger generation. 

While this progress is commendable, it is essential to persist in breaking down any lingering barriers and promoting equal access to opportunities, ensuring that aspiring entrepreneurs and professionals from all backgrounds can flourish and contribute to a more inclusive and prosperous society. 


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