As part of a larger investigation on the state of the American Dream, CNN Money released the results of a poll which asked the public to reflect on the attainability of the American Dream. Not surprisingly, over half of the population believes that they will never fully attain the quintessential American Dream, with 63% of respondents between the ages of 18 and 34 asserting that the dream is an impossibility. The skepticism surrounding the reality of an American dream is largely a reaction to the still turbulent socio-economic climate and reevaluation of traditional financial goals and values. Economists suggest that while the vast majority of Americans have higher incomes than their parents, only half have more wealth. The poll further investigated popular perception about the correlation between financial gain and emotional well-being by asking citizens to estimate their financial need to maintain a happy lifestyle.
Historically, a great deal of emphasis has been placed on the role that financial gain, wealth and monetary assets play in increasing emotional well-being and happiness. The findings of CNN Money’s American Dream Poll however, suggests that individuals are increasingly convinced that money and happiness are not synonymous. Over 60% of individuals claimed that they would consider themselves wealthy with an annual combined household income of less than $250,000, which is only a fraction of the income of a large corporate leader. Fifty-five percent of all respondents said they would feel happiest making between $50,000 and $200,000 each year. In fact, a quarter of the respondents claimed they would find happiness making between $50,000 and $70,000. The poll findings seem to support an older Princeton University study which asserted that emotional well-being increased with financial gain up an amount of $75,000 after which the well-being no longer increased based on monetary gain but other factors.
Some economists suggest that this culture shift has some correlation to the increase in low-wage jobs, where individuals and families are becoming more accustomed to simply scraping-by making hourly wages with no benefits and limited job security. Financial planners and economists agree that the key to stability has become less about landing a high paying job and more about properly managing your assets. At Sinclair Risk and Financial Management, we understand the necessity of proper Wallingford financial planning and long term capital management. We proudly specialize in personal and business financial planning and risk management services, and offer a wide range of services, including retirement planning and personal insurance solutions, that take into account both your short- and long-term goals. We have experience working with individuals from all walks of life and our specialists can help develop strategies that fit your lifestyle, needs and priorities. Give us a call today at (877) 602-2305 for information about our offerings.