While the average age of folks striking it rich may be dropping, their expectations reportedly are growing more out of touch with reality.
A survey of U.S. investors with $25 million or more finds their average age dropped by 11 years since 2014, to 47. These fabulously rich Americans, whose ranks have more than doubled since the depths of the Great Recession, are younger than less wealthy millionaires, Bloomberg explained. The average age of those with at least a mere $1 million is 62, a number that hasn’t budged in years.
The finding suggests a “vast generational transfer of wealth” is “just beginning,” said George Walper Jr., president of the Spectrem Group, which conducted the study. The sample size was small—185 Americans with more than $25 million in net worth—but the findings are consistent with other economic research on the top 0.1 percent.
MarketWatch cited a recent survey by YCharts, an investment research platform, 65% of millennials ages 22-37 say they’ll reach seven-figure wealth by age 45 or sooner.
However, the numerical data are stacking the odds against such a future reality.
"Fully two-thirds of millennials have nothing saved for retirement, according to a report released this year by the National Institute for Retirement Studies — and 95% are not properly saving for retirement," MarketWatch said.
“Financial experts recommend that millennials set aside 15% or more of their salary for retirement, which is a much higher rule of thumb than recommendations for previous generations. But we find that millennials’ average retirement savings rate, including employers’ matching contributions, is 10% of their salary,” Jennifer Brown, NIRS manager of research, writes in the report
This younger generation just may be “delusional” about “how much money they are able to save and how much they will be able to earn,” Agnes Kowalski, a wealth therapist, told MarketWatch.
Kowalski said this can happen with people of all ages but she said that millennials in particular “have incredibly powerful new belief systems about not capping how much money can be earned” as “there are so many careers that were non-existent even 10 years ago” — which may help explain why they think seven figures is possible.
Meanwhile, the surge of young, rich Americans is eye-popping.
Forty-five single Americans under age 26 filed a tax return for gross income of $10 million or more for 2016, based on data from the Internal Revenue Service. The number with earnings of $1.5 million or more in that age cohort reached a record 930, Bloomberg reported.
About 1,400 under age 26 earned more than $1 million.
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