"Patriotism is the willingness to kill and be killed for trivial reasons." Bertrand Russell

Tuesday, April 12, 2005

Slim to none

What are your TRUE chances of getting rich?

To answer this question we first have to define "rich". In The super-rich, the 'plain' rich, the 'poorest' rich...and everyone else I explain how and why I conclude that a household or family with an annual income at least ten times that of the average-- with no one in the family actually working to make it-- qualifies as rich in America today.

So the basement income to qualify as 'rich' will here be considered to be $400,000 in annual income that'll come in regardless of whether anyone in the family is holding a paying job or not.

As pointed out in The super-rich, the 'plain' rich, the 'poorest' rich... even winning the maximum prizes available in high-profile sweepstakes like the Publisher's Clearinghouse won't get you into the 'rich' category without still more large gobs of luck to go with it. Some winners may find themselves in worse financial shape a few years after winning than they were before! And prestigious awards like the Nobel Prize, Pulitzer, or MacArthur Foundation Award fall even shorter in regards to propelling winners into the 'rich' class.

Inheritance of wealth is by far your best bet. Flip side? If you have no such prospects your chances of ever attaining riches dims substantially.

More than 50% of everyone qualifying as rich today basically inherited their wealth. So if you have a rich relative who really really likes you (and is considerably older than you), you may have a shot there.