Income Percentile Calculator for 2015 US Data

This article contains a calculator which will calculate 2015 income percentiles for the United States, based on all individual earners.  It originates from the Current Population Survey in March, so data for comparison would be earned between January 2014 and December 2014 - as in, all income, salaries, dividends, interest, and other payments … [Read more...]

Income Percentile Calculator for 2014 US Data

In this article, you'll find a calculator which calculates individual income percentiles for 2014 United States data.  This data is collected in the Current Population Survey in March, so data collected is incomes earned between the beginning of January through the end of December 2013.  Data itself comes from the University of Minnesota's … [Read more...]

A Calculator: Income Distribution by Age for 2015 in the United States

In this article, we present 2015 United States data in a calculator to show income brackets for every age from 18-80, and age 85. It is from the Current Population Survey, in the Annual Social and Economic Supplement, known as the ASEC.  That means this data is for income earned between January 2014 and December 2014.  It includes all forms of … [Read more...]

Don’t Overthink Your Financial Statistics

The real life equivalent of "my ears are burning" for a writer online is seeing large influxes of people from a new site in our Analytics panels.  We like to check the context of our larger links - and this article is directed at a number of new visitors over the last month or so, as our Net Worth Percentile by Age and Income Percentile By Age … [Read more...]

Net Worth by Age Calculator for the United States

Ever wonder how your net worth stacks up with the rest of your age group in America?  We made a calculator using Federal Reserve data - merely enter your net worth and the age range of the primary earner in the household to see which net worth quantile your net worth puts you in for your age group! Once you select your inputs, we will graph all … [Read more...]

The Older You Get, The More Discipline Helps Your Net Worth

Last year, we published a mildly interesting article which stated that income doesn't really predict net worth all that well (despite what we have been told - for various reasons!). However, the problem with that sweeping generalization quickly became clear upon looking at the graph - what do we do with all the retirees?  And, additionally … [Read more...]

Emergency Funds are Overrated: Part One of Three

Emergency funds are a controversial topic that have always irked the writers here at DQYDJ. Okay: overall, we think they are a decent idea... but the singular focus on obtaining one despite the (usually ignored) costs is  the incorrect focus for most financial prioritization decisions. In this series, I will lay out three reasons why emergency … [Read more...]

How Much Do People Save, by Income?

A few weeks back we presented one of our signature pieces of original research on what Americans saved based upon their ages.  That data used fresh data from the Consumer Expenditure Survey to paint a picture - however imprecise - of savings trends across age ranges. Today we complete the short lived series with data from the aforementioned … [Read more...]

Wealth is Not Income

One of the mass illusions which has mesmerized the American people in recent memory is the conflation of income and wealth.  They are two topics that are, of course, intertwined (and correlated) - but not necessarily good proxies for each other.  Here's how it generally goes: News interviews small business owner, usually making a bit more than a … [Read more...]

Are College Graduates Better Off Today Than in the Past?

Time may only move in one direction - but just like a faster than light neutrino, let's ignore physics for a bit!  Inspired by this comment from an anonymous author, we will take you to the years 1976 and 1989 and look at life through the eyes of a recent college graduate. Methodology For our income data we visited our trusty stalwart of a data … [Read more...]

Should You Get a Degree or Drive a Truck?

Admit it – when you woke up today you asked yourself this very question – “is it better to go to college or to become a truck driver?“. Well, so did we here at DQYDJ. Inspired by a Twitter conversation from our friends JT at MoneyMamba and Matt Allen at Rambling Fever, we had to ask… how much do recently minted college graduates make when compared … [Read more...]

How Many Hours a Week Do You Work? Why More Hours Means More Money in America.

Editor: we updated this work in 2014 and broke down the data by hours worked.  Please read that piece as well. Thomas Jefferson once said, "I'm a great believer in luck, and I find the harder I work the more I have of it." Wise words from a man who died with the equivalent of $1,000,000 in today's dollars worth of debt - but his words still ring … [Read more...]

Substitution vs. Income Effect (and its Implications)

Let's start with a thought experiment: if you were to receive a 10% increase in your hourly wage, would you increase, decrease, or maintain your hours worked?  Believe it or not, any answer is correct, despite many assumptions regarding the positive slope of labor supply curves.  The reason that any answer is correct lies in an understanding of … [Read more...]

Exotic Investing: Closed End Funds

Oftentimes the best place to look for value is in a place few others know to look. Go ahead and quote that; I just made it up. Closed end funds are an often overlooked place in the market for your investment funds.  CEFs are mutual funds which trade on exchanges and lack the price arbitrage functions of Exchange Traded Funds.  This means that … [Read more...]

Milton Friedman’s Permanent Income Hypothesis

Milton Friedman’s Permanent Income Hypothesis Revisited Milton Friedman is most certainly the most influential economist of the last fifty years and, perhaps with John Maynard Keynes, the most influential of the entire 20th century.  His theories and research continue to shape public policy debates even to today. One of Friedman’s most influential … [Read more...]