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 (read: best fit equations wrapped up in a calculator pretending to be 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 … [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.

(If reading in a reader or email, click through for dynamic content) 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 true today. I wrote this article on a … [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...]