Harry Potter Author J.K. Rowling's Billionaire Status Disapparates

You won't believe how the wizarding-world visionary "squandered" her fortune

By Natalie Finn Mar 09, 2012 9:50 PMTags
JK RowlingAP Photo/ Louis Lanzano

J.K. Rowling is down a few hundred-million galleons.

The Harry Potter author, estimated in recent years by Forbes to be worth $1 billion and therefore one of only a few dozen British billionaires, is no longer worth 10 figures, according to the bean-counting magazine.

So what did it? Bad investments? Too many shopping sprees? A butter-beer addiction?

None of the above.

Turns out Rowling is just a really lovely person who paid her taxes (apparently they tax the 1 percent a whole lot in Britain) and gave a hunk of her fortune—roughly $160 million—away to charity.

And, don't worry, the creator of the entire Harry Potter world isn't going to be writing her next novel out of her car or anything: The decrease in net worth only means she's got less than 640 million pounds in the bank, according to London's Daily Telegraph.

We won't weep for her just yet. We will, however, take that novel-for-adults she's working on ASAP if she's concerned about padding her savings account.