Ever since Beyoncé and Jay Z began dating over a decade ago, all sorts of rumors have surrounded their relationship. But one speculation that has not reached the tabloids is that either party said “I do” for the money.
Queen Bey has her kingdom, and Jay Z has his empire; together, they ranked first on our highest-earning celebrity couples list in 2013. And now, in 2016, they are again the year’s highest-paid celebrity couple, raking in a regal $107.5 million over the past year.
The sultry songstress pulled in $54 million, good enough to claim the No. 34 spot on Forbes’ Celebrity 100 list—the annual ranking of the world’s top-earning superstars. Jay Z finished a smidgeon behind, taking the No. 36 slot with a $53.5 million tally.
Both got a boost from Beyoncé’s sixth No. 1 album, Lemonade, which debuted exclusively on Jay Z’s Tidal streaming service (his wife and several other Celebrity 100 members are co-owners). But Beyoncé edged her husband in annual earnings by playing 19 shows during Forbes’ June-to-June scoring period, easily topping Jay Z’s grand total of two.
“I’ve never met anyone that works harder than me in my industry,” the songstress once told FORBES.
Though Jay Z didn’t tour over the past year, he was plenty busy behind the scenes with other projects. He continues to make millions on his Armand de Brignac champagne, D’Ussé cognac and entertainment company Roc Nation. The multifaceted organization includes a record label, artist management and a sports agency that represents the likes of Kevin Durant and Robinson Cano.
Jay Z didn’t release an album during the scoring period, either. In fact, he hasn’t put out a solo record in three years. That’s by design, if his words in the past are to be believed.
“There was a time in music where a hit solved everything,” he explained to Steve Forbes in 2010. “That’s no longer true. I think the music business is still stuck in that place because we haven’t figured it out. One of the biggest things in business is to open yourself up for change.”
What about last year’s top-earning couple—Taylor Swift and Calvin Harris? They would have kept their crown, each pulling in more than Bey and Jay Z, but they parted ways before this year’s list launched.