PARIS (Reuters) - Francois Hollande, the Socialist “Mr Normal” who will be sworn in as French president next week, says he is worth almost 1.2 million euros ($1.5 million), considerably less than his predecessor Nicolas Sarkozy.
Hollande, who campaigned on a promise to ditch the showbiz style that won Sarkozy the nickname of “President Bling Bling”, says in a declaration published on Friday that his principal asset is a house on France’s southern Riviera coast.
The declaration shows that Hollande, who rents his apartment in Paris but could now move into the presidential Elysee Palace, has declared assets of 1.17 million euros, primarily the house of 130 square meters in the chic Riviera village of Mougins.
Other assets declared are bank accounts worth 8,200 euros, a life insurance contract worth 3,550 euros and 15,000 euros of furniture, said the declaration.
The man who used to travel to work by scooter, and described himself as “Mr Normal” during campaigning, does not own a car, the declaration says.
Sarkozy, who hands the reins over to Hollande on May 15 and may go back to work as a lawyer, said in an official declaration in March he was worth about 2.7 million euros, up from 2.1 million when he took power in 2007.
Most of that is in life insurance products but Sarkozy also declared a collection of autographs, watches and statuettes worth 100,000 euros, and a joint bank account of 57,000 euros he shares with his wife, the singer and former model Carla Bruni.
Hollande’s wealth falls just below the threshold that would make him liable to pay wealth tax in France.
His French Riviera residence was bought in 1986 for just over half its current declared value and is the place where he spent summer breaks with former partner Segolene Royal, with whom he had four children in a quarter of a century together.
He now lives with Valerie Trierweiler, a journalist who says she wants to remain working mother to pay the way for three sons she had before meeting Hollande.
Hollande, whose doctor father Georges dabbled in property investment, said in his declaration he had part ownership of two apartments in Cannes that are worth 370,000 euros in all.
Among the first measures he says he will implement after he takes over is a 30 percent cut in the presidential salary of more than 19,000 euros a month.
Reporting by John Irish; Editing by Andrew Heavens