What it's like to be a billionaire
For the world's wealthiest people, buying an average US home would be like spending 42 cents.
This post comes from Len Penzo at partner blog Len Penzo dot Com.
The other day I was reading an article on the world's 200 richest people and stumbled upon a few surprising factoids.
The first surprise was that the richest guy in the world is neither Bill Gates (No. 2) nor Warren Buffett (No. 4). It's America Movil SAB chairman emeritus Carlos Slim, with a net worth of $77.5 billion.
Sandwiched between Gates and Buffett on the rich-guy list is someone named Amancio Ortega. I had never heard of him myself, but it turns out that Ortega is the founder of the world's largest clothing retailer, Inditex SA. Ring a bell?
It didn't for me.
By the way, did I mention that Inditex SA runs a very popular clothing chain known as Zara? There are 1,600 Zara locations worldwide. Even so, I'd never heard of that store either.
I guess I really should get out more.
Anyway, that brings me to the second surprise. Apparently, Ortega earned a whopping $18 billion through the first nine months of 2012. For those of you counting at home, that comes out to approximately $66 million per day.
Assuming he earned income at the same rate for the remainder of the year, that means a total of $24 billion in 2012.
Ever wonder what it would feel like to be a billionaire? Well, I'm going to show you.
The U.S. median income last year was $51,413. That's just 1/466,808 of Amancio Ortega's income in 2012. With those figures in mind, and ignoring the effects of inflation, here's a very close approximation of what most people would experience -- give or take a few cents -- if their modest wages had the same purchasing power:
- The average home in the United States could be purchased for 42 cents, based upon the current median price of about $200,000.
- Of course, folks who feel like moving up could bite the bullet and buy a spacious $2 million home in Vail, Colo., for $4.28.
- Or, for just $49.27, close a deal on the Malibu beachfront mansion that Leonardo DiCaprio recently placed on the market, based upon his asking price of $23 million.
- A four-year stint at a private college would set you back 37 cents, assuming annual tuition and other expenses of $40,000. Just remember, when tuition increased -- and you know it will -- you'd have to shell out a few cents more, but I'm sure you could handle that.
- If you wanted to avoid the hassle of flying with the general public, you could buy a Boeing 787 Dreamliner for $428.44, based upon an approximate list price of $200 million.
- Unless you already know how to fly a commercial jet airliner, you'd also need an additional 53 cents per year to pay for a pilot, assuming an annual salary of $250,000.
- As for that pair of hockey tickets I purchased to attend the 2012 Stanley Cup Finals, they would have only cost me a half-cent, based upon the $2,462.35 I actually paid for them. So I could have taken my whole family for a penny.
- On the other hand, I could have also spent that same penny on two top-of-the line iMac computers.
- Or 20 iPod Classics.
- And really frugal folks could make that penny stretch even further by getting 100 iPod Shuffles instead.
- Hungry? If you plan on buying anything from your typical fast-food dollar menu, you better be. A single penny would buy 4,762 items.
- Meanwhile, those of you in the market for a fancy luxury car could buy a 2013 BMW 750i -- with a 445-horsepower, 4.4-liter twin-turbo V8 under the hood -- for just 19 cents, based upon the manufacturer's list price of $87,195.
- Then again, for the more practical types, a 2013 Honda Civic coupe would only set you back 3.8 cents, based upon an MSRP of just over $17,965. Heck, that deal is so good I'd give the salesman 4 cents and tell him to keep the change.
More on Len Penzo dot Com and MSN Money:
I'll take you to alaska and show you hard work boy!
get your facts straight before posting.
i find this a very interesting article regardless. i work my tail off on the ocean and wisely invest.
nothing wrong with using your back or brain to be rich as long as it's earned.
In simple terms, ........ If you were born a billionaire, you could spend 1 million every month till you were 83.33 years old without taking any interest into account, in a word, comfortable.
Fair is the guy who works hard and SMART, and gets ahead. I'm sorry but the guy working in a sewage plant shoveling potty most likely screwed around in school, had no discipline, no accountability and then ends up with a crappy job and thinks he works as hard as some guy who spent 24 years in school, skipped the partying, read and studied 18 hours a day, started out working smart and succeeded. You are a fool if you believe that Zuckerburg and Gates didn't work for months and years, sleeping under their desks, never taking a vacation, foregoing fun in order to get where they were.
I was there at the birth of the micro computer industry and we all worked 20 hour days including weekends. I can remember fainting into my soup and almost drowning from sheer exhaustion. Make yourselves feel better by believing that they just got lucky, but I have found the harder and smarter I work the luckier I get. And most of you who got rich off of your stock from Microsoft would be a lot poorer if there weren't those of us who sacrificed so much so that you could have jobs.
I am sick and tired of being demonized for my success and the thousands of jobs I have created. I am 61 and ready to retire. When the baby boomers retire, remembering that 90% of all new jobs in the last 30 years have been created by small business, you are all screwed if you don't get your head out of your asses and remember who butters your bread. It sure as hell isn't the government.
I can't believe someone was actually paid to write this article.
Anyway the 2013 Stanley Cup Playoff tickets will cost each of you $0.00
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