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Old 07-28-2010, 12:26 AM   #61
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Once it became clear to me that upper management didn't want us talking about our pay levels, I was willing to tell anyone who indicated curiosity. I never cared who knew, especially since most of us were in a fairly similar range. It wasn't how much I made, but how much I saved that mattered. Only a few knew that part. DW, best friend...that may be it.
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Old 07-28-2010, 03:45 AM   #62
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Not from my experience. Depends on your level, industry and location. I've known folks in $40k-150k range, heard from multiple sources numbers of 180k and 250k salaries; and then there was one guy interviewing me a for Symantec position back around 10 years ago said he had an offer in Europe for a "7-figure salary" (I guess he was at the top of the "programmer" chain; he was not a manager)... None of these are from consulting, all are W2 salaries. Consulting can get larger of course.
Wow. All the salaries I knew (mostly in the LA area) were bunched from 15K-20K back in 1979 for 0yrs experience to 90K-135K in 2006 for 10-30yrs experience.
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Old 07-28-2010, 07:10 AM   #63
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Once it became clear to me that upper management didn't want us talking about our pay levels, I was willing to tell anyone who indicated curiosity. I never cared who knew, especially since most of us were in a fairly similar range. It wasn't how much I made, but how much I saved that mattered. Only a few knew that part. DW, best friend...that may be it.
Agreed - management definitely does not like the idea of sharing salary level among employees to prevent them from asking more or keep them content at their current pay (or compensation) level. Personally, I do not mind sharing salary info when asked as it is NOT a secret based on the type of work and experience.
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Old 07-28-2010, 08:19 AM   #64
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Amazingly, I had clients try to guess my profit margin on advertising we produced more than you would think. I always thought that was weird. I mean, what were they going to do with that information? The ads weren't going down in price, and they couldn't do it. I usually low-balled it anyway so they weren't getting true information (you always want them to think you make less than you were).

Anyway, how do you figure out how much someone's creativity is worth? Really now?
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Old 07-29-2010, 07:13 AM   #65
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My wife, our accountant and the IRS.

Nobody, not even the IRS
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Old 07-29-2010, 07:25 AM   #66
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Only DH. No point telling anyone else even when they ask. Firstly, none of their business and secondly, it only leads to trouble. I have been asked point blank before by close relatives but I just say "not much" and switch subject.
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Old 07-29-2010, 12:22 PM   #67
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I've been in the Army in some form for the last 17 years...my pay has always been public record (Military Pay Tables).
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Old 07-29-2010, 12:42 PM   #68
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I discuss job offers with my network of friends to get their advice and feedback, so people often know the numbers that I am mulling over. I'm perfectly willing to discuss the numbers with my coworkers who want to share salary info so we can be better informed for negotiating raises/new jobs.

I don't see being any less open about my net worth and income once I manage to reach FIRE, it will be useful info for my friends for them figuring out when and how they will be done too.
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Old 07-29-2010, 02:38 PM   #69
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My wife knows and the IRS. I have a feeling that my MIL was told just based on comments she's made. My parents know ballpark figures. Hasn't really come up among friends. People at work can get really close if they wanted.
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Old 07-30-2010, 07:14 PM   #70
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I've shared what I earn during negotiations about job offers, as the low point of a desired salary range.
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Old 07-30-2010, 11:06 PM   #71
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Who do (or did) you share your salary and other compensation with?
I am retired. Before retirement, my wife was the only person with whom I shared salary info.


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Were there cases when you shared this info with others but then were sorry that you did?
Oh man.

Besides my wife and brother, I've disclosed info about our net worth to 3 friends. I regret discussing our net worth with 2 of those 3 friends and won't share net worth info with others.

1) One friend suggested we "trade" net worth info and so we did. We were both surprised at how different our nets worths were because we were close in age, both LBYM adherents, had similar family situations, and had worked in the same field. I sensed that he harbored some hard feelings after we swapped the info.

2) Another friend my age turned out to be a slacker, mooched off his parents, work only when it suited him, and had no ambition or financial sense. He piled up a mountain of debt after his parents passed away and he began a relentless campaign asking me for money to bail him out. He became hostile and threatened me with extortion at one point.

3) A third friend is money savvy and we are able to discuss financial topics rationally, without any negative side effects or hard feelings.
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Old 07-31-2010, 08:16 AM   #72
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I told a very good friend my salary but other than that, only DH and I know our income.

My eldest brother (14 yrs my senior) asked me point blank one night (after several drinks and discussing investing) what our net worth was. I was surprised and blurted it out without thinking. I then immediately proceeded to ask him his net worth (tit for tat!). His was about 1/2 ours and was mostly based upon equity in his house. I think he was impressed, happy for our success, but I'm sure a bit surprised given that he is older and his salary is more than ours combined. (He openly shared his salary with us at his last promotion. He is much more open about money than us.) He has 2 kids and his expenses are much higher than ours. LBYM, LBYM, LBYM!
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(49, married; DH 53. I am fully retired as of 2015 (well ok, I still work part-time but only because I love the job and have complete freedom to call off if I want to travel with hubby for work), DH hopes to fully retire 2018 when he turns 55 to access 401K penalty-free...although he may decide to do part-time consulting)
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Old 07-31-2010, 08:17 AM   #73
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Besides my wife and brother, I've disclosed info about our net worth to 3 friends. I regret discussing our net worth with 2 of those 3 friends and won't share net worth info with others.


2) Another friend my age turned out to be a slacker, mooched off his parents, work only when it suited him, and had no ambition or financial sense. He piled up a mountain of debt after his parents passed away and he began a relentless campaign asking me for money to bail him out. He became hostile and threatened me with extortion at one point.
YIKES. Very scary. Another reason to keep quiet about NW!
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less stuff, more time

(49, married; DH 53. I am fully retired as of 2015 (well ok, I still work part-time but only because I love the job and have complete freedom to call off if I want to travel with hubby for work), DH hopes to fully retire 2018 when he turns 55 to access 401K penalty-free...although he may decide to do part-time consulting)
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Old 07-31-2010, 08:36 AM   #74
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YIKES. Very scary. Another reason to keep quiet about NW!
The problem, however, is who you consider as a friend. A "true" friend does not extort, harm or hurt you and support you in every way during both good and bad times.
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Old 07-31-2010, 12:39 PM   #75
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We've shared ballpark figures with each of our only siblings (I would have to put some effort into figuring exact numbers). They are both good with money and each make substantially more than we do, so no hard feelings there. I can't remember if my parents have ever asked, but it would be fine to tell them, they ER'd last year. All of this group are good conversation partners about finances, to compare notes and such. Same for net worth.

DH's parents were not especially good with money and DH has mentioned to me that he doesn't want his mom knowing what he makes or how much we have because he's worried she'd feel slighted or resentful if we didn't share more with her (FIL is deceased). She doesn't ask. I think she will not know what to think if/when we FIRE after DH's 20 years of military service are completed.

A couple other close friends know of our plans to ER, but numbers have never come up. Other family (who mostly have very little knowledge or experience with the military) seem to be somewhat expecting that DH will retire on his military pension. If numbers came up with that crowd I suppose we would share, as his military pension will be less than most of them earn and we will be able to honestly say that we are mostly living on that.
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Old 08-01-2010, 01:56 AM   #76
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just my wife.
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Old 08-01-2010, 09:00 AM   #77
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One person who doesn't know how much I earn is the guy sitting next to me on the plane...

Recently I was flying business class to Brazil for work. The guy next to me had no sense of boundaries. He was a civilian contractor in Afghanistan and was traveling to see his mistress and illegitimate child in Brazil.

I guess he was so proud of how much he was earning he told me what he earned. After awhile he asked me how much I made (I guess since I wasn't forthcoming). He was offended when I refused to say.

Talk about a weirdo...

I often wonder how people afford business class tickets. Last week I observed a woman and her two kids (under 10 years old) in business. They had to be $6,000 tickets..
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Old 08-01-2010, 02:12 PM   #78
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I often wonder how people afford business class tickets. Last week I observed a woman and her two kids (under 10 years old) in business. They had to be $6,000 tickets..
My guess is that Dad clocks up a huge number of frequent flyer points and the family uses them.

On Friday I flew business class for less than the price of an economy ticket. Friday evening is not peak business class usage time - at least on this route. The occupants of business class included a federal government minister, a 20 something honeymoon couple, and a few other people like myself who weren't flaunting any wealth.
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Old 08-01-2010, 03:32 PM   #79
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Right now, everyone knows how much I make. Zilch!
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Old 08-02-2010, 11:25 PM   #80
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I
I often wonder how people afford business class tickets. Last week I observed a woman and her two kids (under 10 years old) in business. They had to be $6,000 tickets..
With considerable difficulty is the answer for most of us.

I know a number of people on expat packages which include an annual return ticket business class for the whole family.

Depending on where you live, remuneration packages can be structured so that you take less income and get a travel allowance - effectively reducing the cost of the tickets. I used to be able to do this in Hong Kong - until they changed the tax laws.

People who travel on business will often add a few days on to the trip as a holdiday - effectively only having to pay for the accomodation etc. I plead guilty to this one.

I know people who time their family vacations around business trips - one business class ticket gets paid by the employer and the rest as a personal expense

Some companies get discounted rates for airfares which they allow employees to use for their personal flying.

People who fly a lot tend to rack up a lot of airmiles - which they can redeem for their own use. My own experience is that it is difficult to get free tickets but not as difficult to buy an economy ticket and use airmiles to upgrade.

The trouble with flying business class is that you get used to it. Going from having a flat bed seat to an economy class @$%# in which there is not enough space to either straighten your legs or cross them is hard - especially for long haul ...
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