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Old 02-11-2018, 01:34 PM   #61
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There are still working (class) dogs and cats who have to hunt or herd, but these are now the minority.
And, ironically, often the most intelligent/astute.
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Old 02-11-2018, 01:58 PM   #62
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I have no idea what class I'm in. Are there perks when you reach the next level? Bonus miles? Cash back? Free TurboTax? Is there an official website?
I do know I enjoy associating with those at the lower end of the income spectrum. As long as I do not disclose anything financial. I've always considered myself upper low class. This was established by the time I was five. Frequently I'm mistaken for a landscaper, construction worker or maintenance man. When I go on vacation tourists often ask me directions since I blend in with the locals.��
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Old 02-11-2018, 02:25 PM   #63
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I would think we live an upper middle class lifestyle, on a peanut butter and jelly income. It is easier to be that way in The South where taxes and home prices are so reasonable.

I do have friends from college that were born to great wealtb. My college roommate lived in an antebellum mansion with a 300 acre manicured front yard. And I have friends that were very successful in business--flying Learjets and King Airs to their numerous homes.

But deep down inside them, they are just like me. They just have to worry about taxes, trust funds and working until age 70+ so their kids will have a place to work.

I left the workforce at 58 years old and we just enjoy life.
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Old 02-11-2018, 02:30 PM   #64
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Good grief. We really love talking about this stuff don't we?

(Not a criticism; merely an observation.)
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Old 02-11-2018, 02:31 PM   #65
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It’s interesting that the OP makes “class” distinctions based on wealth. In Europe, “class” has more to do with a way of life.

Wikipedia explains several methods of defining “middle class”.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Middle_class

My grandparents were “working class”. My parents moved up to the “middle class”. I have always seen myself as “middle class”. I have no desire to define it further. I feel comfortable associating with a broad range of friends, but will admit that I would feel a little out of place inviting billionaires or aristocracy to supper!
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Old 02-11-2018, 02:39 PM   #66
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Around here, if you can't speak with your lawn guy in his native tongue, you are middle class.
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Old 02-11-2018, 02:41 PM   #67
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Originally Posted by FIREd_2015 View Post
I googled and found this:

https://phoenixmi.com/wp-content/upl...es-Ranking.pdf

The report uses the term affluent instead of middle class. Here is their cutoff for the different segments (on page 4 of report):

Near Affluent $100k - $249k Investable Assets
Lower Mass Affluent ($250k - $499k) Investable Assets
Upper Mass Affluent: $500k - $999k Investable Assets

Investable Assets includes educational/custodial accounts, individually owned retirement accounts, stocks, options, bonds, mutual funds, managed accounts, hedge funds, structured products, ETFs, cash accounts, annuities, and cash value of life insurance policies
OK let's say a married couple both worked 35 years and now each earns a $50K annual pension with COLA. They have also paid the max into SS and waited until 70 to take it. There net yearly income in retirement is now $180,000 per year plus they have free medical from pensions and medicare. It would take over $5 million to purchase a guaranteed lifetime COLA annuity to equal their $180k/year inflation adjusted income, yet these people rent, and by the above criteria have zero net worth, and are no way near affluent. I suspect a lot of retirees would love to have a guaranteed $15,000 per month for life, with COlA and free medical, versus being considered 'near affluent'?
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Old 02-11-2018, 02:45 PM   #68
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Geeze, by this definition my dog is Upper Class.



My cat must be Aristocracy.

Put me in the Undeserving Poor Class with Alfred Doolittle.
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Old 02-11-2018, 02:49 PM   #69
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OK someone with a NW of $10m will have a different opinion than one with a NW of $3m. But for my purposes, I was using the $800 - $2.7m NW demographic.
I don't know about you, but I would be much more comfortable with $2.7m than $0.8 million! In fact, I doubt that we would live the same lifestyle.
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Old 02-11-2018, 02:50 PM   #70
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I recall someone once describing this board as "the lumpen slums of cyberspace".
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Old 02-11-2018, 02:52 PM   #71
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I find that the designation of Upper Mass Affluent to be $500k - 999k very hard to believe.

A conservative 3% return would be $30k pa., well below the Middle (avoiding the word class) spectrum based on income alone. 5% Return would be $50k just about, etc. etc..

So In Retirement income does not really cut it as a true measurement. Let us assume $0 return. $2m / 30 (years) = $66k a year to live on. Add a minimum return of 3% and now you approach what I consider to be Mass Affluent. This means That with say $500k for a home paid for, a NW of $2.5m is mass affluent. Add $25k of SS (Average). That is a good place to be. At least I think so.

So raw income does not really make for a good measurement for a Retiree. Hence my original comments and observations.

And for the record, I do not really care, but this morning was a little slow.
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Old 02-11-2018, 02:53 PM   #72
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Good grief. We really love talking about this stuff don't we? ................
I think it is nostalgia for all the money we had just a few weeks ago.
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Old 02-11-2018, 02:59 PM   #73
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We don't measure ourselves against others. The first paragraph of John Bogel's book "Enough" really says it all:

At a party given by a billionaire on Shelter Island, the late Kurt Vonnegut informs his pal, the author Joseph Heller, that their host, a hedge fund manager, had made more money in a single day than Heller had earned from his wildly popular novel Catch 22 over its whole history. Heller responds, “Yes, but I have something he will never have . . . Enough.”

We have enough. From that comes peace of mind.
I have enough to travel how / where I want, invest the excess, not worry about pullbacks, and not go into the office 40+ hours a week
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Old 02-11-2018, 03:03 PM   #74
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As I drive my rusted 2001 Acura through the streets of Scottsdale, Az, I get some condescending looks from the Bentley and Ferrari drivers -definitely appalled by my “lower class”. I don’t get the same looks at home in Illinois.
It is probably because they identify you as a rust belt refugee! You could get by with a used BMW provided it has never seen snow and salt.
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Old 02-11-2018, 03:16 PM   #75
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I recall someone once describing this board as "the lumpen slums of cyberspace".
Yes. Help my memory. I think he might have been a writer? And this was his parting retort.

(We recently had a writer from Toronto, who made money by retiring at 34 and living of child assistance by having 7 children, interact with us on the Financial Wisdom Forum. His name is Derek Foster. The link is
Financial Writer Talks Turkey
and his screen name is stopwork.)
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Old 02-11-2018, 03:23 PM   #76
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Yes. Help my memory. I think he might have been a writer? And this was his parting retort.
Writer? Ha!

Lawyer... (Sorry Gumby)

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You are rather clueless, aren't you. SEC lawyers don't make seven-figure incomes or determine the course of human events.

But XSEC lawyers do.

And we'll do that long after you've taken down your inconsequential shingle and "retired early" because your working life is so meaningless.

I'm checking out of here for a better place, like my own blog maybe. Regret dropping in earlier this week. Didn't realize these are the lumpen slums of cyberspace.
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Old 02-11-2018, 03:35 PM   #77
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I also think one aspect of "class" is knowing how to act in a variety of different situations and this seems to have little to do with income or net worth.
+1

I know some financially well off but "low class" people as well as some financially challenged but truly high class folks.
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Old 02-11-2018, 04:20 PM   #78
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Proud lumpen of cyberspace class here.
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Old 02-11-2018, 04:24 PM   #79
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...................There are still working (class) dogs and cats who have to hunt or herd, but these are now the minority.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nemo2 View Post
And, ironically, often the most intelligent/astute.
I'd call my greyhound astute - she retired when she was only three. I suspect that she slowed down to take the exit to the couch instead of the kennel crates.
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Old 02-11-2018, 04:25 PM   #80
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Originally Posted by FIREd_2015 View Post
I googled and found this:

https://phoenixmi.com/wp-content/upl...es-Ranking.pdf

The report uses the term affluent instead of middle class. Here is their cutoff for the different segments (on page 4 of report):

Near Affluent $100k - $249k Investable Assets
Lower Mass Affluent ($250k - $499k) Investable Assets
Upper Mass Affluent: $500k - $999k Investable Assets

Investable Assets includes educational/custodial accounts, individually owned retirement accounts, stocks, options, bonds, mutual funds, managed accounts, hedge funds, structured products, ETFs, cash accounts, annuities, and cash value of life insurance policies
I really can’t see the numbers above— way too low
{should start at 250-499 , then 500-999, with upper mass affluent 1-2 mil; 4% of 500k plus average SS gets you to a bit over average family wages while that of two mil gets one to “comfortable “ if house is paid off}

for us, we left the suburban part of the city in neighborhood where most had college degrees (next door had recently sold to couple where one was a patent attorney and the other an engineer while ours sold to a full professor at a local (well known) university). we both had grad degrees and had incomes putting us in the 33% fed tax range. Now retired to a place where the retirees might have been degreed but none of the working residents do.
With pension and assets we’re in the “comfortable” area, even without SS yet, so one would be hard pressed to define exactly what “class” we might be...
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