What Is Considered Mass Affluent Based Off Income, Net Worth, And Investable Assets

Average Net Worth For Above Average Person

The middle class is the best social class in the world because nobody messes with the middle class. Politicians endlessly pander to the middle class in order to gain votes to stay in power. When you’re in the upper class, you become a target for hate groups who can’t stand success in the great USA. If you’re poor, well that just stinks.

But what about the mass affluent? You might have heard the term bounced around here and there on the TV, online, or on the radio. Surely including the words “mass” to signify a large population and “affluent” to signify wealth is an even better class than the middle class? As far as I can tell, the mass affluent are yet to be negatively targeted by hate groups.

In this post you’ll learn about the various financial definitions that aptly describe the mass affluent. Furthermore, we’ll discuss why being part of the mass affluent has its benefits.

When Saving Money Is No Longer Worth Your Time But You Do It Anyway

Cash MoneyAfter drinking a couple beers with a buddy a couple months ago, I dragged myself across the street to get a flu shot at Walgreens. Supposedly this season was one of the worst, and I had no desire to get swine flu. I hate needles. The insertion isn’t what bothers me. What irks me is the uncomfortable feeling of liquid getting pushed into my veins as the injector tries to hold the needle still. I don’t know how heroine users do it!

I actually didn’t feel a thing this time around because I was a little tipsy. Perhaps you too should give needle injecting a go after a couple drinks (see doctor for professional medical advice). When I went to pay the bill the pharmacist said, “That’ll be $34.95.

Over the past 11 years I don’t recall ever paying for a flu shot. The first nine years was because my old firm was awesome enough to bring a pharmacist in to our office and inject us all for free. And the last two years my insurance provider paid in full. But this pharmacist was adamant that Cigna, my insurance company, wouldn’t pay for the particular strain I was about to get. Odd.

Normally I would have told the pharmacist to hold up so I could give my insurance company a call and ask them what’s up. But this time, I just couldn’t be bothered with this picayune amount. “OK, no problemo! Charge away.” I didn’t want to have to spend 30 minutes on the phone for the chance of sending in my receipt to get reimbursed $35. Maybe if I was absolutely bored out of my mind with a lot of time to kill I’d go through the entire discovery process, but I just didn’t have the patience.

Use The Jeans Strategy To Save More For Retirement And Stay In Better Shape

The Jeans StrategyWho doesn’t like a pair of nice fitting jeans? For the first time in 14 years I bought myself a new pair. My old boot cut jeans were purchased back at the Diesel flagship store in Manhattan a month after I got my first bonus in 1999. I’m surprised they’ve lasted this long. There’s nothing wrong with them, it’s just that the bottoms have started to fray and the color has faded.

I’m a pretty minimalistic guy when it comes to clothing. I enjoy wearing the same outfits over and over again probably because I’m lazy when it comes to fashion. Jeans and a t-shirt or jeans with a long sleeve collared shirt and a blazer are the cleanest looks in my opinion. I also enjoy using things until the max. My 2000 Land Rover is a perfect example of “if it works, no need to change” attitude. Shopping for clothes on a constant basis brings little joy. I’d much rather spend my money traveling. 

Financial Disconnect Or Financial Awareness?

Picanha - Best Brazilian Meat

Just order picanha and skip everything else!

One of my new favorite restaurants in San Francisco is Espestus Churrascaria. The restaurant serves good old fashion Brazilian meat that is more tasty than some of the finest dry-aged rib-eyes. Ever since visiting Rio de Janeiro in 2006 during business school, I’ve been craving to eat some Picanha (rump cap) until finally my best friend took me to Espestus last month.

After going without picanha for eight years, I wanted to return just a month later. Perhaps one of the main reasons why I never went was because of the cost. At $74 a person after tax and tip for food alone, Espestus costs a pretty penny! Instead of just going with my friend the second time around, I asked her if she’d like to invite another couple friend of ours to make it four.

Here’s her text response: Too expensive for them.

Espetus is surely an expensive place to eat, but our friends are in their late 30s, rent a $3,700 a month apartment and drive a 2010 Porsche Cayenne. The husband also has a $10,000 motorbike.

Here’s my text response to my friend: Ask them anyway. They drive a Porsche that costs literally 15X more than Moose!

She texts back: OK, I’ll see. 

Maybe It’s Your Fault Why Wealth Inequality Continues To Worsen

wealth-inquality-chart

After publishing The Best Of Financial Samurai 2013, I went back to several of the articles to respond to comments I missed. As I was reading some of the comments across various topics, I started getting this sinking feeling that perhaps there’s nobody to blame but ourselves for our current financial situation.

The biggest problem I see in society is the widening gap between the rich and the poor. When CEOs make 300X their average worker’s salary and the top 5% own roughly 74% of all the assets, we’ve got some serious wealth inequality here! I was just at this political fund raiser party which consisted of a couple hedge fund partners, a pre-IPO Chairman (host), and a CEO of a major food company and I realized then and there equality for our children is but a pipe dream. It’s vexing to read about a 55 year old distraught over losing her job when she’s had 30 years to save and invest. She should be close to millionaire status by now and ecstatic with a going away severance!

I’m doing my best to help empower people to build their own wealth and narrow this ridiculously wide gap. But I think I’m failing miserably, despite the millions of visitors a year on Financial Samurai. Some days I feel it might be better to just kick back on the beach all day long instead of spend over a hundred hours a year writing content for five years in a row now. Collectively, I think we all have a responsibility to help others if we have the capability to do so. So the question is: What are you doing to help reduce the wealth gap?

The other side of the equation is people who are purposefully widening the wealth gap through financial self-destruction. We know we need to work harder and later than the average person to make more money. We know we need to spend within our means and invest in order to build our wealth. Unfortunately, we often don’t do the logical, even if a logical proposal is laid out right before our eyes.

Below are some sharp comments from my 1/10th Rule For Car Buying post to give you some examples. The post’s goal is to help limit people’s spending on one of the most destructive expenditures to wealth around. If you are easily offended or feel bad that I receive such vitriol on a constant basis, you may want to skip to the conclusion instead. I love it, but I’m masochistic!