A research study that surveyed over 10,000 millionaires resulted in the following findings to help guide others to achieve a comfortable financial security:
- 79 percent of the respondents did not receive any inheritance; 80 percent were from families at or below a middle-class income level.
Conclusion:Building wealth is within your control and doesn’t depend on being born into a rich family.
- 33 percent never made more than $100,000 a year; 31 percent made around $100,000.
Conclusion: Wise spending, saving, and investing are more important than your salary level.
- 94 percent live on less than they make; 75 percent reported never having a credit card balance.
Conclusion: Stay out of debt and keep expenses below your income to build a financial foundation.
- 75 percent of those in the study indicated consistent investing over a long period of time as the reason for their financial success; 80 percent invested in their company’s 401(k) plan; none said one individual stock investment was a big factor in their financial success.
Conclusion: You don’t need to find that one stock that will make you rich. Invest consistently in broad-market index funds over a long period of time.
88 percent of those who responded graduated from college, compared to 38 percent of the general population. And over half (52%) of the millionaires in the study earned a master’s or doctoral degree, compared to 13% of the general population. Almost two-thirds (62%) graduated from public state schools, while only 8 percent went to a prestigious private school.
Most of the 10,000 millionaires studied achieved their wealth through consistent investing, avoiding credit card debt, and smart spending, along with…no lottery tickets… no inheritances…no six-figure incomes…no lucky stock picks.
Even when millionaires don’t have to worry about money anymore, they’re still careful about their spending. Over 80 percent reported using a grocery list in some format.
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- Have students talk to others to obtain information about actions they take to achieve long-term financial security.
- Have students create an oral presentation or podcast that reports the findings of the study summarized in this article.
- What actions do you believe to be most important for building wealth?
- Describe how you might communicate to others suggested actions for improved long-term financial security.