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New York Times quiz- are you rich?

TheGreyKingTheGreyKing 2128 replies100 threadsForum Champion Williams College Forum Champion
edited August 1 in Parent Cafe
Given the frequent debates on College Confidential about what income levels qualify as “rich” or “elite,” I thought some people might enjoy this New York Times quiz.

It was interesting to me, because before joining College Confidential, I considered myself “upper middle class,” as do most people in my area who are around my income level. After reading people’s input on CC, including national income levels, I was like, “Oh, I guess we’re above middle class.” But this New York Times quiz put us back down again, responding to my answers to the survey with the comment, “No, you’re not rich.”

So, here’s the quiz, “Are you rich?”
Are You Rich? This Income-Rank Quiz Might Change How You See Yourself
https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2019/08/01/upshot/are-you-rich.html?smid=nytcore-ios-share
edited August 1
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Replies to: New York Times quiz- are you rich?

  • austinmshauriaustinmshauri 8843 replies325 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    edited August 1
    The quiz is based on your own perception. If you consider the top 5% of wage earners "rich" and you earn just less than that, it will tell you you're not rich.
    edited August 1
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  • oldfortoldfort 22900 replies290 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    I always told my kids we were middle class, but the test told me otherwise.
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  • diegodavisdiegodavis 46 replies10 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    Quiz doesn't count assets. I guess they mean "rich this year" vs "rich for life."
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  • RichInPittRichInPitt 807 replies10 threadsRegistered User Member
    edited August 1
    It’s all relative. A vast majority of Americans are dreaded 1%-ers on a global basis.

    Defining “rich” based on annual income, which can change at any time, is just dumb.

    I recently retired at 53. Maybe I should apply for food stamps, as I must be poor...
    edited August 1
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  • ucbalumnusucbalumnus 77784 replies678 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    edited August 2
    Seems like the point of the article is that people tend to think they are poorer relative to those around them than they actually are. Which matches up with how people on these forums think of themselves as "middle class" despite income and/or wealth that means no college FA anywhere.
    edited August 2
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  • austinmshauriaustinmshauri 8843 replies325 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    Thank you, @ucbalumnus. I'm on my phone so I didn't see that there was an article under the survey. It's interesting that it shows "your threshold for rich" then compares your reported income to the actual incomes of people in your area. I took OP's post to mean that the article supported their view that they aren't rich in comparison to most people in the area, but I don't think that's necessarily true. It depends on how you interpret the data.

    I did an experiment for the NYC area and chose rich as the Top 20% and said our income is $165k. The top of the report says "No, you're not rich" in big letters, but adds in smaller text "based on the threshold you set." So all that means is you think you're not rich. People need to study the chart to see that a $165k income puts them in the 75th percentile for our area. If having stats that put you in the upper 25th percentile of a school makes you high stats for that school, it seems like having an income that puts you in the upper 25th percentile of a region would make you upper income for that area.

    The article does note that assets and expenses (such as high medical bills or high student debt) do make a difference, but that's a difference in wealth not income. I think that's what colleges use to calculate financial aid. You can be upper income, but they'll consider special circumstances that affect wealth.
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  • jym626jym626 55360 replies2879 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    edited August 2
    ^ @scout59 - you can see a certain # of NYT articles free each month.
    While its a simplistic model, its interesting to have us see how we equate income to our perceived “class”. Still reminds me of the long-gone poster who claimed to be “dirt poor” despite having a personal banker, taking expensive trips, buying expensive camera equipment, etc. (and it sounded like he had the $ to do it).
    edited August 2
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  • scout59scout59 3490 replies67 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    @jym626 - yeah, I usually run through those free articles pretty quickly! And the comment was meant to be tongue-in-cheek.

    Oh yes, I remember that long-gone poster...and I resent the comparison! (Again, tongue-in-cheek.) I also agree about that disconnect between "class" and income. I see it all the time IRL and on CC.
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  • mom2andmom2and 2820 replies19 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    I thought of you @ucbalumnus when I saw this article as it reflected your frequent comments about CCers perception of their income class vs reality. The point of the article is simply to get people to recognize that their income may well put them at a level that is beyond middle class. Of course assets, expenses and age make a difference (which is why average or median income is not always the best measure since that includes new graduates and retirees), but when people live in their suburban bubbles they often don't recognize how much more they earn than the average household.
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  • jym626jym626 55360 replies2879 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    @scout59 - Its only Aug 2 and you’ve run through this month’s NYT freebie articles already?? ( 💪🥳 ) (LOL)
    I am also not willing to pay for the online subscription (and recently gave up our local paper after decades of delivery) but usually can find a freebie version of an article published elsewhere by searching by the title or author. Not always as effective with WSJ articles, though :(
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  • EconPopEconPop 119 replies2 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    edited August 2
    based on the threshold you set for what constitutes a rich income,
    As others have said, this phrase completely invalidates the "quiz" in my opinion.

    It doesn't matter if the quiz accounts for assets, or anything else. It would be more appropriate if the quiz was titled "Do you think you're a high earner?"

    Further, if the quizzee answers "Don't Know / None Of These" to the question about what the quizzee considers to be a "rich" income, this is the answer for every possible income entered, from 60,000 to 2,000,000 (which the quiz caps at 200,000)
    You’ll have to decide for yourself if you’re rich or not.
    Oh. That's not very helpful, Quiz Author(s)

    Thanks for the link to the quiz. It was an cute diversion to the morning. But no thanks to the authors, who didn't appear to even be trying to deliver the goods with this article/quiz.
    edited August 2
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  • PublisherPublisher 7783 replies80 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    edited August 2
    On a related note, a list of the top 20 universities with the "highest number of ultra rich alumni" was recently shared on msn.com. (Harvard, Stanford, Penn, & Columbia topped the list followed by NYU, MIT & Northwestern.)
    edited August 2
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  • EconPopEconPop 119 replies2 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    edited August 2
    Publisher wrote: »
    On a related note, a list of the top 20 universities with the "highest number of ultra rich alumni" was recently shared on msn.com. (Harvard, Stanford, Penn, & Columbia topped the list followed by NYU, MIT & Northwestern.)

    I'm curious if there are similar lists for community colleges? I have no idea if community colleges have significant endowments and/or generous donating alumni
    edited August 2
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  • jym626jym626 55360 replies2879 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    edited August 2
    https://hechingerreport.org/community-colleges-join-the-fundraising-game/
    Investments from community colleges’ endowments, combined, earn $27.6 million a year, according to the American Association of Community Colleges. That’s how much Harvard alone makes from its $32.7 billion endowment about every two and a half days.
    edited August 2
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