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10 Secrets of the Capitalist Class

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10 Secrets of the Capitalist Class
Two businesspeople shaking hands in office

The capitalist class consists of households with incomes of at least $350,000 to $500,000. Often, they are successful business owners, politicians, athletes, and executives. With 90% of wealth not inherited in the United States, almost all are self-made.

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As you learned in Class in the United States and Household Income in the United States, the capitalist class represents the top 0.9% of income. Sometimes called the super-rich, members of the capitalist class often have incomes of at least $350,000 to $500,000 per year, which would require several million dollars in assets to generate. Since we know that more than 90% of wealth in the United States is not inherited, how did the men and women who make up the capitalist class get to where they are? What can we learn from them?

In this step-by-step guide, part of our How to Get Rich guide for new investors, we'll reveal the secrets of the capitalist class. You'll learn what they do differently that results in building wealth. You'll find out the philosophies that helped them reach a place where they are financially independent enough to spend time with family or travel the world.

 

A High Income Isn't Enough to Truly Join the Capitalist Class

Before we begin, let me reiterate the example I provided in Class in the United States to illustrate the difference between merely having a high income and truly being a member of the capitalist class.

Imagine two men, Greg and John. Greg is a medical doctor and earns $300,000 per year. He has to show up to work regularly, using the rare skills he’s acquired through a very expensive medical school education and years of on-the-job training. If he dies, or goes into a coma, his family will receive little or no income because he’s unable to work. John, on the other hand, owns a $3,000,000 limited service hotel that generates $300,000 per year for him. He doesn’t have to run it or be involved in any way because he pays a management firm to set rates, staff the property, and maintain the standards required by his franchise agreement. If John suddenly passes away or is incapacitated, his property will continue to mint money, drowning the family in cash. The family also has the option of borrowing against the equity they have in the property to acquire another hotel or expand, increasing profits further.

I've always said that the purpose of investing is to make your money work for you so that it generates cash regularly instead of (or in addition to) you having to sell your labor. In this case, John is truly a member of the capitalist class because he owns assets that generate cash for him as a result of providing needed services to the economy. In other words, John is not important or respected because he is rich; he is rich because what he has built fills a necessary need in society and the money is evidence of that. Greg, however, is very well off and experiences a standard of living among the highest in history. But he is not a true member of the capitalist class. To be, he would need to take his earnings from practicing medicine and build a collection of cash generating assets that could work alongside him, pumping out money as he focuses on healing people at the hospital.

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