Roth individual retirement accounts were created to help middle-class earners set aside money for retirement with no taxes due upon withdrawal. But PayPal co-founder Peter Thiel has used his Roth IRA to amass a $5 billion nest egg.
Thiel’s Roth IRA was worth less than $2,000 in 1999, according to Internal Revenue Service data obtained by ProPublica. Roth IRAs are funded with after-tax dollars, which means at withdrawal the money is tax-free. (Traditional IRAs are funded with pretax dollars, so distributions are taxed at withdrawal.)