How Much is 6, 7, 8, and 9 Figures?

28.12.2021
Stefan

You may have heard people referring to salaries by a number of figures. This figure of speech (pun intended) has become so commonplace, we don’t really think about it anymore. And we should, since understanding these references could make a difference in setting and achieving our financial goals. So, let’s dive into the stats and facts behind these expressions.

How Much Is a Figure?

A figure represents a single number or digit, meaning, all the numbers from one to nine fit into this definition. While this is the literal definition, the word is often used to describe an individual’s salary or net worth, depending on the context.

How Much Is 6 Figures?

This represents an annual salary of $100,000-$999,999. While in the 20th century this income was reserved only for the most successful, rising wages, higher costs (like the rising cost of college), and inflation have made six figures not only more attainable but also less valuable. 

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual salary in the United States is $51,480. This means that earning even if it’s in the low six figures, your income is still almost double what the majority of the country makes. Around 30.7% of US households earn over $100,000 and 15.5% of Americans earn between $100,000 and $149,999. 8.3% of the population makes between $150,000 and $199,999; and about 10.3% of Americans earn over $200,000.

(PolicyAdvice, RamseySolutions)

Of course, the nationwide numbers don’t paint the full picture. For example, although in Los Angeles the average income of $59,770 per year is a little higher than the country’s mean, home prices are astronomical, more than often exceeding $778,000. On the other hand, in a place like Tulsa, where the average earnings are $47,910 per year, people generally pay around $188,200 for a place to live.

(PolicyAdvice, GoBankingRates)

Then, each state has varying income taxation brackets, impacting income greatly. For example, Colorado (4.55%), Illinois (4.95%), Indiana (3.23%), Pennsylvania (3.07%), and Utah (4.95%) have flat tax rates which are also some of the lowest in the country. In other states, where there are multiple brackets, taxing can get to as high as 14%.

(NerdWall)

Jobs That Earn 6 Figures

Being a doctor and making a lot of money has become somewhat of a trope, so it’s not surprising that they account for a lot of the six-figure earners. They, however, are not the only ones:

  • Surgeon — $252,040 on average 
  • Anaesthesiologist — $261,730 on average 
  • Financial manager — $129,890 on average
  • Lawyer — $122,960 on average
  • Airline pilot — $121,430 on average, $208,000 for the top earners in the field 
  • Software developer — $107,510 on average

(TheInterviewGuys)

Average Salaries for Select 6-Figure Jobs

6-Figure Earner Demographics

In terms of generations, data shows that 10% of millennials earn over $100,000, compared to 9% of GenX and 11% of Baby Boomers. Education-wise, higher education often translates into higher salary, with stats indicating that nearly a third of Americans with a graduate degree make at least $100,000 a year, compared to 14% of those with an undergraduate, and 6% of those that have some college education. As little as 6% of those with no higher education have a six-figure salary. 

(Yahoo Finance)

Age and Education Demographics of 6-Figure Earners

How Much Is 7 Figures?

Earning seven figures means bringing in between one and $9.9 million per year. Only very few ever reach this level of income and the vast majority of the population of the world outside the US might not even earn this much money in their whole life.

Compared to the average US salary of just $51,480, seven figures is a gargantuan income, even considering the high taxes one must pay when reaching this income bracket. In fact, this segment of earners is also the one who pays the most, contributing 37%. This means that earning a million dollars will actually net you just $630,000 which is still a lot but not quite as much when you put it into perspective.

(PocketSense)

As with any amount, how far seven figures will get you depends highly on your location and necessities. Firstly, we must take into account the cost of buying a house. The home market in California, for example, can make even a top earner feel broke since the median price of a property is $600,000, almost 88% higher than the national median ($320,000). Add the transportation costs that are also 27–45% higher than anywhere else in the nation, healthcare prices which are inflated by 30% from the average and high tax brackets (up to 13.3%) and you have the perfect recipe to eat out your profits.  

(RamseySolutions)

7 Figure Jobs

Although most people who earn this much usually do so from a business or investment, there are some select nine-to-fivers who also rake in these amounts:

  • Entrepreneurs 
  • Enterprise sales representatives
  • Investment bankers
  • Consultants 
  • C-Level Execs
  • Influencers 

(TheWayStoWealth)

7 Figure Earners Demographics

Earning one million dollars per year will place you in the top 0.1% of the world. According to the latest data available, 76% of US millionaires are white, while Black American and Asian American millionaires account for 8% each, and Hispanic for 7%. Gender-wise, stats indicate that only 13% of the US ultra-high net worth population in the US are female, vs. 87% for men.

(FinancialSamurai, Statista)

Distribution of US Millionaires by Race/Ethnicity and Gender

How Much Is 8 Figures?

That would be a lot—someone earning eight figures has a yearly revenue of anywhere between $10 million and $99.99 million.

While for other income levels a lot of factors like taxes, inflation, and general costs of living will massively impact the living standards of the earner, those with an eight-figure revenue won’t feel these differences as much. Still, the bottom line won’t be the same in all circumstances.

Eight figure earners fall into the highest income tax bracket of 37%, the same as everyone that earns over $523,600. This means that they pay $157,804.25 plus 37% of the amount earned over $523,600.

(QuickenLoans)

Jobs That Earn 8 Figures

Of course, getting this much pay from a job alone is extremely rare. This type of salary is reserved for those at the very top of extremely big companies, such as Fortune 500 CEOs, hedge fund managers, and founders of unicorn start-ups. Also, another category with this type of income is people with an extremely rare talent or ability, like high-profile athletes, movie stars, musicians, or other entertainers.

(InvestedWallet)

8 Figure Earners Demographics

Only 1.13% or 1,456,336 of American households fit into the decamillionaire category when it comes to net worth alone. Additionally, somewhere around 97,287 US households are estimated to have $50,000,000 or more. While no ethnicity data for decamillionaires specifically is available, stats show that 96.1% of the top 1% are white households, with Black households accounting for as little as 1.4%.  

(DQYDJ, HuffPost)

How Much Is 9 Figures?

Nine figures represent the number of digits forming someone’s income who earns between $100 million and $999.9 million per year.

Earning this insane amount of money will pretty much cancel any other potential downsides related to the cost of living in one place or another or other similar inconveniences like inflation and taxes. Sure, you’ll get left with less in your pocket when everything is said and done, but considering how much you’re earning, you most likely still wouldn’t have enough things to even spend all this money on.

Jobs That Earn 9 Figures

Since only an incredibly small amount of people earn as much, no traditional job can really net as much money. People who belong in this income bracket are the highest-paid CEOs, athletes, and financial managers.

9 Figure Earners Demographics

There are only 205 people in the United States who make over $50,000,000. Although there’s no data available, we can only guess how few people make over 100 million. They are not just in the top 1% or 0.1% — they are in the top 0.000001%.

(MarketWatch)

Figuring it Out

Joining the club of high earners is something that many people strive for but unfortunately not all succeed. Getting a good education and extra qualifications is certainly a good start, along with negotiating your salary and possibly checking out investment opportunities to increase your wealth. Those, however, can also lead to losses, so choose wisely. 

References: PolicyAdvice, RamseySolutions, GoBankingRates, NerdWall, TheInterviewGuys, Yahoo Finance, PocketSense, TheWayStoWealth, FinancialSamurai, Statista, Statista, QuickenLoans, InvestedWallet, DQYDJ, HuffPost, MarketWatch

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