Ever wonder where you fit in, wealth-wise, on a scale from “subsistence farmer” to Amazon’s AMZN, -0.15% Jeff Bezos?
“Millionaire” doesn’t cut it anymore, according to economics editor Peter Coy, who says it’s too broad because it covers “everyone from random pikers with a scant $1 million in net worth all the way up to people just shy of billionaire status.”
So Bloomberg developed a wonky scale based on scientific notation, or powers of 10. One million is 10 to the sixth power, so a basic millionaire is a 6. Someone with $1 is a zero and someone with a dime (or 1/10th of a dollar) comes in at -1. Less than that — negative net worth — and it’s -2.
Here’s the breakdown:
As you can see, the biggest cohort comes in at just 3, and that’s the median American renter with a net worth of $1,000, which covers a small emergency without borrowing. Only two people, Microsoft MSFT, -0.97% founder Bill Gates and the aforementioned Bezos get the 11 designation.
Tesla’s TSLA, +1.35% Elon Musk is stuck at 10 while Democratic congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is middle of the pack at 5.
“It’s a bit appalling that disparities in wealth have gotten so big that we need logarithms to describe them,” Coy wrote. “But that’s the world we live in.”