Rich in America Part 1: What Does It Mean to Be Wealthy?

What does it mean to be rich?  And how much do you have to be worth to be rich?  It all depends of your view.

What does it mean to be rich in America? Are the wealthy best defined by net worth, income or lifestyle? How do the lives of the rich differ from those of other Americans? Notions of wealth are shaped by age, income, occupation and other demographic characteristics, according to a January survey of 1,260 investors by Spectrem’s Millionaire Corner. Here’s what we found:

  • Age: The vast majority of investors associate wealth with greater security, but older investors are more likely to view security has a hallmark of being rich.
  • Income: Lower-income investors – those who earn less than $100,000 a year – are more likely to associate “more happiness” with the wealthy.
  • Net Worth: The high net worth – those with investable assets of $5 million up to $25 million – are the most likely to associate wealth with greater security
  • Retirement status: Working Americans are more likely to see the wealthy as having more stress and a more complicated life, while retirees associate being rich with greater security and more responsibility.
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