{ "media_type": "text", "post_content": "Serious question. I constantly see income reports published that indicate only ~5% of the US population make over $250k, ~1% over $500k, etc. Is this actual W2 reported income? Do corporations have ways to compensate individuals so that their total comp does NOT show on their W2 (RSUs, Deferred Compensation, etc.)? Reason I ask is because I see great wealth all around me. I feel like these reports do not always tell the whole story in terms of TC & investment income.", "post_id": "61e9ceec49f052002f8c26e5", "reply_count": 34, "vote_count": 2, "bowl_id": "552d1d24dc1c586b09d2d051", "bowl_name": "Consulting", "feed_type": "crowd" }

Serious question. I constantly see income reports published that indicate only ~5% of the US population make over $250k, ~1% over $500k, etc. Is this actual W2 reported income? Do corporations have ways to compensate individuals so that their total comp does NOT show on their W2 (RSUs, Deferred Compensation, etc.)? Reason I ask is because I see great wealth all around me. I feel like these reports do not always tell the whole story in terms of TC & investment income.

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You are right, the numbers alone don’t. But neither does your very privilege (just as I am privileged) anecdotal view. There’s two extremes - on one end, the ultra-wealthy don’t necessarily earn income, yet can afford things because of generation wealth. That’s not income. On the other end, there is extreme poverty that you don’t see day to day because of the bubbles we live in.

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The ultra-wealthy have income, but it’s all unearned income. They’re not getting W-2s based on salaries or hourly wages.

I think there’s a a lot here. First wealth is not the same as income. Many wealthy adults are living off of trust funds not earning a dime. Second, you probably live in a bubble of wealth. Third, many people like to portray wealth despite not having the funds to actually be wealthy.

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You live in a bubble. Your city, your school, your neighborhood, your company… All of it is a bubble versus the reality out there. So do I… but don’t let this make you think that the world is wealthier than it is

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1% of the US population is still in the millions. Top 5% is the population of some countries. So unless you know several millions people, which you probably don’t, you’ll be surrounded mostly by your socio economic peers. So you’ll mostly see people in the top 5%.

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You may see the illusion of great wealth around you. But how many of those people are also living in great debt to portray that illusion of great wealth?

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Spend some time on your hometowns Facebook page. You’ll see that people are still arguing over whether or not $11/hr is too high for Dairy Queen. (Literally happening in mine right now). Like others have said, there is a massive bubble around you

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What states are these? Here in the bay area Pete’s Coffee are closing at 1pm everyday cause they cant find employees for 18$ an hour.

I just wanted to say you live in a bubble, in case people didn’t repeat it enough .. I regret that I don’t have any meaningful contribution to this thread.

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It’s not W2 income. It’s income as reported on tax returns. Truly wealthy people don’t have much W2 income - they have 1099 income from investments and other non-employee payments, pass-through income from businesses they own in part or in full, etc etc.

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There are - but wealth and income are not the same thing at all.

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Concur with others, you’re likely in a bubble and may not even realize it. Especially if you live in one of the tony parts of Manhattan, LA, SFO, etc…guess what, you’re living among the national top 5% in that case. In NO way do those areas represent life in the vast majority of the nation.

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Definitely living in a bubble. Walk around NYC and I guarantee once you’re going to see a ton of not wealthy People

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Household or individual income?

From NYC and a first generation American. Dad had no college education and was blue collar. Mom was a teacher but mostly a stay at home mom all her life. Neither ever broke $100k. I lived paycheck to paycheck for ten years after college, working to slowly chip away at my loans. I have friends from the hood, friends from high school, friends from college, and then from my M7 business school and “this world.” You live in a bubble, as everyone has stated on this thread. Stop chasing the wealth that the people in your bubble have. They didn’t have loans or other debt growing up. Probably, neither did you. You are extremely wealthy compared to the rest of the US and the world.

I do have 1 kid, probably will have 1 more

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