Comments (80)

Mar 10, 2012

I 100% agree. Money doesn't make you happier past a 2000 square foot home and $90K/year take-home for a family of four.

That said, if your wife does not have to work, that makes you and your family happier.

If you do not have to work past 35, that makes you and your family happier.

If you do not have to worry about money, that makes you and your family happier.

I completely agree with you that the Ferrari and the house in Westchester do not add more happiness to your life than a year of early retirement. But I also believe that life is short, that life is difficult, and you want financial security and the freedom to not need to work.

    • 1
Mar 10, 2012
IlliniProgrammer:

I 100% agree. Money doesn't make you happier past a 2000 square foot home and $90K/year take-home for a family of four.

That said, if your wife does not have to work, that makes you and your family happier.

If you do not have to work past 35, that makes you and your family happier.

If you do not have to worry about money, that makes you and your family happier.

I completely agree with you that the Ferrari and the house in Westchester do not add more happiness to your life than a year of early retirement. But I also believe that life is short, that life is difficult, and you want financial security and the freedom to not need to work.

Perfect post

Sep 23, 2012

.

Mar 11, 2012
IlliniProgrammer:

That said, if your wife does not have to work, that makes you and your family happier.

Maybe. Not all women want to sit around and play mommy/housewife all day. Not HAVING to work is definitely nice, but don't underestimate how many women have their own goals that don't revolve around keeping you and your children company. In my family, most of the women have their own careers and the ones that are exclusively housewives are the ones that were most cought up in their careers at one point. Think of it this way: (1) sitting at home alienates people which (2) bores you which (3) can cause problems for a relationship. Also, several guys have had jobs outsourced, and the second income, even if smaller, was enough to keep the family on an even keel until they found another job. Finance types are no longer immune from this reality, so take this into consideration: it can happen to you.

IlliniProgrammer:

If you do not have to worry about money, that makes you and your family happier.

Mostly true, but I know a lot of families that don't make much and are still happy: they just enjoy each other's company. The first time my family went through financial hardship, everyone drew closer together to support each other, and we're better off for it. Personally, I'm new and don't make a whole lot, but I can definitely tell you that the quality of relationships (friends, family, or otherwise) that existed before I started working here pale in comparison to the ones where people warm up to me to try to get something out of me. At this point, I don't even tell people in my hometown what my career goals are anymore, where I work, or what I'm expected to make within a certain period of time because I want to know the connection is real. Also: too much money too quickly can throw the basic balance of a family off because the rules change so dramatically....I've seen this as well. Kids are the worst with this because they don't have any concept of how much work/luck it takes to make money, so they'll burn through resources with the most abondon because they have no concept of the future.

KingHasReturned:

the unexamined life is not worth living.

I've asked myself several times if this is what I really want to do, and I encourage everyone to do so as well. Making the long term effort is only worth it if you really want to be here. You're well positioned after a relatively short time, so pick something you actually want to be doing....chances are, you'll focus on it more and end up ahead of the guy who hates his job or doesn't give a shit.

I do agree that living below your means is a good thing, but also realize that many people here are driven by AMBITION, and not necessarily just $$$$$$$. You'd be surprised how many millionaires look like regular people: they're after so much more than flaunting a little bling. The logic driving them is a little different....cash is a secondary priority once a very basic level of income/expenses has been locked down.

    • 1
Mar 11, 2012
UFOinsider][quote=IlliniProgrammer:

I do agree that living below your means is a good thing, but also realize that many people here are driven by AMBITION, and not necessarily just $$$$$$$. You'd be surprised how many millionaires look like regular people: they're after so much more than flaunting a little bling. The logic driving them is a little different....cash is a secondary priority once a very basic level of income/expenses has been locked down.

This.

Have big goals, and work towards them HARD. Don't make it about money and don't make it about status or prestige, these are all really just artificial anyway.

It's about this: Ten years from now, what will you be able to say you accomplished? If this is your motivation, the money will always be there, and yet you'll never feel like you're making sacrifices to get there.

    • 1
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Mar 10, 2012

or.......you could.....you know.....live below your means?

Mar 10, 2012
manbearpig:

or.......you could.....you know.....live below your means?

Yep!

You don't have to lead a $ 400,000 lifestyle because you make 400,000.

A 200,000 lifestyle could be good enough.

That's exactly why we have corporate fraud. People are afraid to loose their job, to make less money, to downgrade their lifestyle. So they start stealing from their company or cook the book.

If you are no longer making 400,000 a year, just choose to live a simpler lifestyle. Sell some of your houses, spend less money on vacations, etc.... and your life will still be good

Power and Money do not change men; they only unmask them

  • BeenPrepping
  •  Mar 10, 2012

then whats the point of the money?

Mar 14, 2012

I have actually thought about quite a bit - how to maximize your own happiness with respect to career (the most changeable thing in our lives, at this point). To do so, you need to figure out what your happiness function is, and what it depends on, and how it will vary with respect to success/money/etc.

The model described below relies on the notion (whether true or not, but pretty true in my observation) that people [very] quickly get used to things they have, and they stop generating happiness rapidly, leaving any future happiness generation to the acquisition of new "things" (perhaps at a declining rate due to concave utility function). This notion will be referred to below as the "high-b hypothesis" and corresponds to a high value of b in the model below.

The best model I have been able to come up with intuitively (excluding the fancy habit formation models that are so driven by parameters that they are virtually useless) is one that splits happiness into 2 components - 1 that is attributable to the level of "success" you are at, and the 2nd that measures the derivative of the "success". Note that success could be anything from wealth to whether you can feed your kids to the number of islands you own, and should perhaps be largely non-financial. Or it could be one's net wealth, including financial and human capital (as expressed by risk-adjusted expectation of PV of future earnings), or whatever else one may use.

While not getting too quanty, the basic model looks something like

h(t) = a * s(t) + b * s'(t) where
h(t) is your happiness at time t
s(t) is your "success level" or "level of accomplishment" or "quantity of things you own" or perhaps even wealth, to be simplistic, at time t
a might be your "satisfaction" constant
b might be your "ambition" constant

[Perhaps a and b are non-negative and add up to 1, with the weights representing the % of potential happiness derived from each factor.]

In such a framework, it becomes interesting to assign different values of a and b for yourself/people you know. A high b ("ambition") would mean that you derive happiness mostly from moving up in the world (in whatever sense you define that), whereas a high a ("satisfaction") would indicate that you care more about the current level of your living situation rather than where its going.

I would think that most on this website are high-b people - I know I certainly am. I think perhaps 70-80% of my happiness comes from the change in my success, rather than the actual level of it. Of course, this may change if I was starving - then whether I have food on the table or not may be more important, though I am really not sure that is the situation (and it may still be captured by the derivative, if I did not have food earlier and now have it).

There is an argument to be made for people to be nearly purely b-driven, as well (<-- high b hypothesis). While it may sound crazy, I think the case could be made that those living in Sub-Saharan Africa could be just as happy as an average person in the US, assuming they don't know about how things are on the outside, or perhaps (less restrictively) that they are not trying to leave, nor do they have a hope of doing so. Such hopes may make people more miserable, while not knowing about other possibilities may make their derivative of "success" essentially 0, much like an average person in the US, hence equal happiness. This might be an extreme example, but in more practical terms, I don't think its crazy to say a CFO of X in NYC is (on average) about as happy as a sheep farmer in Idaho, or a bus driver in Nigeria.

Admittedly, thinking this way presents tons of issues. For example, the concept of charity work becomes questionable - if the recipient only receives a temporary bump in happiness (which then promptly reverts to the mean) then is it worth it? Anyways, lots of open questions.

Glad to hear thoughts from others.

EDIT:

Upon further thought, 2 changes to formulation above:
1. I made an oversight in the original formulation of my model. The second term in h(t) = a * s(t) + b * s'(t) should be b * s'(t)/s(t) so as to measure the % change in s(t), rather than the absolute change, since absolute changes in s(t) mean more or less to different individuals, based on current levels of s(t).

  1. Perhaps treat s(t) as some measure of, lets say, % of the world that would switch places with you at any given time (ignoring informational asymmetries and other such frictions). Alternatively, you could think of it this way: what % of the population of the world would you switch lives with? The lower the percent, the better off you are in your own life, whether that be in terms of finances, human capital, emotional satisfaction, etc. I suppose I make the assumption of, amongst other things, traded assets and efficient markets, to avoid individual preference conflicts, but that is not too relevant. Furthermore, to be mathematically correct, s(t) would need to scale in some non-linear fashion, especially as it approaches 1 (almost everyone would switch places with you), but that is not the point and I will not go into the details.
Mar 18, 2012
Dr Joe:

I have actually thought about quite a bit - how to maximize your own happiness with respect to career (the most changeable thing in our lives, at this point). To do so, you need to figure out what your happiness function is, and what it depends on, and how it will vary with respect to success/money/etc.

The model described below relies on the notion (whether true or not, but pretty true in my observation) that people [very] quickly get used to things they have, and they stop generating happiness rapidly, leaving any future happiness generation to the acquisition of new "things" (perhaps at a declining rate due to concave utility function). This notion will be referred to below as the "high-b hypothesis" and corresponds to a high value of b in the model below.

The best model I have been able to come up with intuitively (excluding the fancy habit formation models that are so driven by parameters that they are virtually useless) is one that splits happiness into 2 components - 1 that is attributable to the level of "success" you are at, and the 2nd that measures the derivative of the "success". Note that success could be anything from wealth to whether you can feed your kids to the number of islands you own, and should perhaps be largely non-financial. Or it could be one's net wealth, including financial and human capital (as expressed by risk-adjusted expectation of PV of future earnings), or whatever else one may use.

While not getting too quanty, the basic model looks something like

h(t) = a * s(t) + b * s'(t) where
h(t) is your happiness at time t
s(t) is your "success level" or "level of accomplishment" or "quantity of things you own" or perhaps even wealth, to be simplistic, at time t
a might be your "satisfaction" constant
b might be your "ambition" constant

[Perhaps a and b are non-negative and add up to 1, with the weights representing the % of potential happiness derived from each factor.]

In such a framework, it becomes interesting to assign different values of a and b for yourself/people you know. A high b ("ambition") would mean that you derive happiness mostly from moving up in the world (in whatever sense you define that), whereas a high a ("satisfaction") would indicate that you care more about the current level of your living situation rather than where its going.

I would think that most on this website are high-b people - I know I certainly am. I think perhaps 70-80% of my happiness comes from the change in my success, rather than the actual level of it. Of course, this may change if I was starving - then whether I have food on the table or not may be more important, though I am really not sure that is the situation (and it may still be captured by the derivative, if I did not have food earlier and now have it).

There is an argument to be made for people to be nearly purely b-driven, as well (<-- high b hypothesis). While it may sound crazy, I think the case could be made that those living in Sub-Saharan Africa could be just as happy as an average person in the US, assuming they don't know about how things are on the outside, or perhaps (less restrictively) that they are not trying to leave, nor do they have a hope of doing so. Such hopes may make people more miserable, while not knowing about other possibilities may make their derivative of "success" essentially 0, much like an average person in the US, hence equal happiness. This might be an extreme example, but in more practical terms, I don't think its crazy to say a CFO of X in NYC is (on average) about as happy as a sheep farmer in Idaho, or a bus driver in Nigeria.

Admittedly, thinking this way presents tons of issues. For example, the concept of charity work becomes questionable - if the recipient only receives a temporary bump in happiness (which then promptly reverts to the mean) then is it worth it? Anyways, lots of open questions.

Glad to hear thoughts from others.

EDIT:

Upon further thought, 2 changes to formulation above:
1. I made an oversight in the original formulation of my model. The second term in h(t) = a * s(t) + b * s'(t) should be b * s'(t)/s(t) so as to measure the % change in s(t), rather than the absolute change, since absolute changes in s(t) mean more or less to different individuals, based on current levels of s(t).

  1. Perhaps treat s(t) as some measure of, lets say, % of the world that would switch places with you at any given time (ignoring informational asymmetries and other such frictions). Alternatively, you could think of it this way: what % of the population of the world would you switch lives with? The lower the percent, the better off you are in your own life, whether that be in terms of finances, human capital, emotional satisfaction, etc. I suppose I make the assumption of, amongst other things, traded assets and efficient markets, to avoid individual preference conflicts, but that is not too relevant. Furthermore, to be mathematically correct, s(t) would need to scale in some non-linear fashion, especially as it approaches 1 (almost everyone would switch places with you), but that is not the point and I will not go into the details.

Quants thinking they know it all

:(

I banana back

Mar 10, 2012

ill be happy when i have yacht money

Mar 10, 2012
whatwhatwhat:

ill be happy when i have yacht money

what happens when you have that yacht for 2 years and then you want a bigger yacht?

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Mar 10, 2012
AndyLouis:
whatwhatwhat:

ill be happy when i have yacht money

what happens when you have that yacht for 2 years and then you want a bigger yacht?

as long as my quantity of bitches (that are only with me because of my yacht) scales with the size of the yacht i will always be happy

Mar 11, 2012
whatwhatwhat:

ill be happy when i have yacht money

Maybe...but remember what a wise man in the Goldman Sachs elevators once said (I think Eddie echoed this sentiment as well):

If you want to die rich, abide by the 3 F's. If it flies, floats, or fucks, rent it, don't buy it.

Mar 11, 2012
design:
whatwhatwhat:

ill be happy when i have yacht money

Maybe...but remember what a wise man in the Goldman Sachs elevators once said (I think Eddie echoed this sentiment as well):

If you want to die rich, abide by the 3 F's. If it flies, floats, or fucks, rent it, don't buy it.

I dont wanna die rich. I wanna live rich tho. So I guess I'll buy'em all

Mar 10, 2012
design:
whatwhatwhat:

ill be happy when i have yacht money

Maybe...but remember what a wise man in the Goldman Sachs elevators once said (I think Eddie echoed this sentiment as well):

If you want to die rich, abide by the 3 F's. If it flies, floats, or fucks, rent it, don't buy it.

The quote is from the character Tommy Earl Bruner in Dan Jenkins' novel, Baja Oklahoma (1981)

Power and Money do not change men; they only unmask them

Mar 10, 2012

The key to life is making as much money as you possibly can without losing your happiness. There's no point in making seven figures if you are miserable.

"For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?"

Mar 10, 2012

the unexamined life is not worth living.

Mar 11, 2012

Happiness is having something to live for. Whether its a person, an idea, a goal, ambition, or even money. If we can wake up every morn and have a vision of what we want to achieve, its gonna be a good day.

Mar 10, 2012

i used to believe illini programmer's way of thinking...that there's only so much money you need, and it's not that high to be happy.

but i will say this, as my income has gone up, so has the number of vacations ive taken to awesome places with people i like going on awesome vacations with. honestly, it's pretty nice to be able to say hey let's go to [random city wherever] for a weekend and then actually do it with your friends / loved ones/ whoever. also, the amount of really great meals i eat at really great restaurants with people that i also really like spending time with has also gone up.

i guess for me, more money definitely does equal more happiness if you have the time and flexibility to enjoy it and you dont lose the relationships you value along the way getting there. does more stuff or just a bigger house mean more happiness? no, probably not (though living in a nice place also adds a lot to your peace of mind). but at 90k takehome per year, if i had a family of four i could probably never take my kids on a sick 2 week safari in africa or whatever. (i mean plane tix for 4 people would prob be like 5-7k alone...). and not having to call eating at applebee's a nice night out, that's pretty nice too.

yes, i am incredibly fortunate, and maybe i'll end up plateauing or having my income decline and still end up having a pretty great life. i dont think money is necessary. but it's definitely nice to have, definitely enhances happiness, and i think i don't discount it as much as i used to when i still lived like somebody out of a college dorm.

as for stuff though...if you've ever revved up a 300hp nice foreign made car (i do not own one for the record), i will say, it kicks the shit out of driving a crappy beat up honda. doing that on a daily basis alone would probably be +20 happiness points for me.

so for me, i want as much money as i can get without compromising myself or my relationships or taking too much of my time. but hey, at least i know why i'm in finance?

    • 1
Mar 10, 2012
xqtrack:

i used to believe illini programmer's way of thinking...that there's only so much money you need, and it's not that high to be happy.

but i will say this, as my income has gone up, so has the number of vacations ive taken to awesome places with people i like going on awesome vacations with. honestly, it's pretty nice to be able to say hey let's go to [random city wherever] for a weekend and then actually do it with your friends / loved ones/ whoever. also, the amount of really great meals i eat at really great restaurants with people that i also really like spending time with has also gone up.

i guess for me, more money definitely does equal more happiness if you have the time and flexibility to enjoy it and you dont lose the relationships you value along the way getting there. does more stuff or just a bigger house mean more happiness? no, probably not (though living in a nice place also adds a lot to your peace of mind). but at 90k takehome per year, if i had a family of four i could probably never take my kids on a sick 2 week safari in africa or whatever. (i mean plane tix for 4 people would prob be like 5-7k alone...). and not having to call eating at applebee's a nice night out, that's pretty nice too.

yes, i am incredibly fortunate, and maybe i'll end up plateauing or having my income decline and still end up having a pretty great life. i dont think money is necessary. but it's definitely nice to have, definitely enhances happiness, and i think i don't discount it as much as i used to when i still lived like somebody out of a college dorm.

as for stuff though...if you've ever revved up a 300hp nice foreign made car (i do not own one for the record), i will say, it kicks the shit out of driving a crappy beat up honda. doing that on a daily basis alone would probably be +20 happiness points for me.

so for me, i want as much money as i can get without compromising myself or my relationships or taking too much of my time. but hey, at least i know why i'm in finance?

Maybe. I have always tried to stay off of the hedonic treadmill.

Driving a Ferrari 1-2x/month as part of a $2000/year car club might be fun. But to drive it every day gets as boring as driving a Honda. This is from a kid who spent his life savings on a 1-year-used mustang at 16 and regretted it after a month.

More money is always nice. It means more security. But I don't think a Ferrari provides a lot more utility than a Corvette convertible let alone a mustang. They are all fun cars to drive; one costs $500/year more than my rusty honda in parts/depreciation; one costs $5K/year more; one costs $50K/year more. But I think that extra $500 buys you a lot more than the $4500 or $49500 difference for the next step up.

I've revved up a 200hp Mustang and a 280 hp '66 Corvette stingray. Same with a late model Ferrari. And I think there's actually a lot more fun in revving up the Corvette than some late model European sports car. It's like getting into the engineer's seat of a steam locomotive- all of the history, lore, and engineering. You pay $0 in annual depreciation (in fact, classic cars gain value every year), probably $1.00/mile in maintenance and mileage depreciation, and that's it. You cruise down the highway past folks driving more expensive European cars, you've got the top down- they look over and they wish they had your car (at least until it starts raining and you have to deal with '60s vintage wiper blades)

Mar 10, 2012
IlliniProgrammer:

Maybe. I have always tried to stay off of the hedonic treadmill.

Driving a Ferrari 1-2x/month as part of a $2000/year car club might be fun. But to drive it every day gets as boring as driving a Honda. This is from a kid who spent his life savings on a 1-year-used mustang at 16 and regretted it after a month.

More money is always nice. It means more security. But I don't think a Ferrari provides a lot more utility than a Corvette convertible let alone a mustang. They are all fun cars to drive; one costs $500/year more than my rusty honda in parts/depreciation; one costs $5K/year more; one costs $50K/year more. But I think that extra $500 buys you a lot more than the $4500 or $49500 difference for the next step up.

I've revved up a 200hp Mustang and a 280 hp '66 Corvette stingray. Same with a late model Ferrari. And I think there's actually a lot more fun in revving up the Corvette than some late model European sports car. It's like getting into the engineer's seat of a steam locomotive- all of the history, lore, and engineering. You pay $0 in annual depreciation (in fact, classic cars gain value every year), probably $1.00/mile in maintenance and mileage depreciation, and that's it. You cruise down the highway past folks driving more expensive European cars, you've got the top down- they look over and they wish they had your car (at least until it starts raining and you have to deal with '60s vintage wiper blades)

I can completely see how you would feel that way, and I'm not trying to belittle your choices. but this is not a question with an absolute right answer...i don't know why it's so hard for you to acknowledge that people are different than you are. yeah for you, maybe a a great car doesn't do it....but for me it does (and all that other stuff i mentioned).

you're completely free to think that what i'm suggesting wouldn't bring you happiness (and i can understand it), but don't tell me that what makes me happy actually doesn't. the hedonic treadmill isn't for you, fair enough. bill gates doesn't seem too fond of it either. but larry ellison, he fucking loves it...

for you, money = security. for me, it's security plus so much more; namely, a quality of life that i really am genuinely happy to be able to have.

Mar 11, 2012
xqtrack:

i used to believe illini programmer's way of thinking...that there's only so much money you need, and it's not that high to be happy.

but i will say this, as my income has gone up, so has the number of vacations ive taken to awesome places with people i like going on awesome vacations with. honestly, it's pretty nice to be able to say hey let's go to [random city wherever] for a weekend and then actually do it with your friends / loved ones/ whoever. also, the amount of really great meals i eat at really great restaurants with people that i also really like spending time with has also gone up.

i guess for me, more money definitely does equal more happiness if you have the time and flexibility to enjoy it and you dont lose the relationships you value along the way getting there. does more stuff or just a bigger house mean more happiness? no, probably not (though living in a nice place also adds a lot to your peace of mind). but at 90k takehome per year, if i had a family of four i could probably never take my kids on a sick 2 week safari in africa or whatever. (i mean plane tix for 4 people would prob be like 5-7k alone...). and not having to call eating at applebee's a nice night out, that's pretty nice too.

yes, i am incredibly fortunate, and maybe i'll end up plateauing or having my income decline and still end up having a pretty great life. i dont think money is necessary. but it's definitely nice to have, definitely enhances happiness, and i think i don't discount it as much as i used to when i still lived like somebody out of a college dorm.

as for stuff though...if you've ever revved up a 300hp nice foreign made car (i do not own one for the record), i will say, it kicks the shit out of driving a crappy beat up honda. doing that on a daily basis alone would probably be +20 happiness points for me.

so for me, i want as much money as i can get without compromising myself or my relationships or taking too much of my time. but hey, at least i know why i'm in finance?

It rarely happens that you earn lot's of money and don't sacrifice family, relationships, social life, hobbies in return...in most cases you gotta work your ass off,14-18 hours a day to make the money at which point you have no energy for other things until you are able to take the pay cut...Time is out most limited resource.

Do what you want not what you can!

Mar 10, 2012
bossman:

It rarely happens that you earn lot's of money and don't sacrifice family, relationships, social life, hobbies in return...in most cases you gotta work your ass off,14-18 hours a day to make the money at which point you have no energy for other things until you are able to take the pay cut...Time is out most limited resource.

I know plenty of people for whom this is not the case...just not investment bankers or corporate lawyers typically...for example, my trader friends work 7-6/7 3-4 days a week and 7-5 on friday with no weekends and their social lives are just fine. The ones I know who are really good at it (as in you can tell they are on their way to being a superstar) don't even get stressed because they have the mentality for doing the job. Granted, trading is a special case, but this also applies to guys at hedge funds, asset managers, etc. Outside finance I know less, though I def know there are some great med specialties that have quality of life and pay too...

For everybody who's disagreed with me above, just note that I definitely emphasized that the people who you get to spend time and money on/with are what matter.

By the way Relinquis, the reason I mentioned the safari was because for me it was one of the best trips I had when I was 8 and my parents took me on it, right before a lot of stuff went to shit in my family. We also took lots of trips to nowheresville, and they were fun too and I got to spend time with people important to me in them, but I don't remember them at all. For an 8 year old, seeing a family of elephants including 3 baby ones with your family has a lot of kick that just laying around in bed in Maine doesn't. And it's something I'll never forget - as in, I still remember individual days and moments from that trip. But don't get me wrong, nowadays I have no desire to personally go on a safari and would rather do the coastal town with my gf anyday. But if I ever have kids in the future, I do want to give them the opportunity to have memories like that. A lot of things are context for people.

Anyways, that's all for me on this thread. I posted here in the first place not to convince people of my viewpoint, but because I used to have a view that was similar to a lot of what people are saying, and in the past couple years ,my pov changed, so I thought people might be interested to hear a different perspective.

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Mar 10, 2012

for most i imagine money makes you happier in the short term, but once your expectations rise and envy/greed come in, you're back where you started, or worse.

I remember hearing a study about a year ago that 70k net was the amount of income needed for optimal happiness of an american, not sure on which cost of living area they based that on, but i semi-agree that is enough for most locals.

Once you have enough for your base, then some left over for fun / savings, in theory you shouldn't need more.

Though on the other hand making $ is fun... and if you have any ounce of greed/envy in you or you like simply the challenge of making money, then by all means go after what you can get.

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Mar 10, 2012

Lol Fuck this philosophical bullshit.

90% of finance people are greedy as sin. Obviously not everyone is in it for the money and money by all means does not buy happiness. Happiness doesn't come from money but it will make your life easier, period.

If not stacking papers an issue why are you wasting your time in finance? I'm sure you can find a much easier and fulfilling caring doing 298132234 other things.

At the end of the day do what you want to do and what makes you feel good at the end of the day and during the day.

Works only one part of life and shouldn't be the common denominator to happiness.

It sounds like a lot of people here are lost on where their happiness comes from and their motives for working in IB/other areas, right or wrong?

Mar 11, 2012
wallstreetballa:

Lol Fuck this philosophical bullshit.

90% of finance people are greedy as sin. Obviously not everyone is in it for the money and money by all means does not buy happiness. Happiness doesn't come from money but it will make your life easier, period.

If not stacking papers an issue why are you wasting your time in finance? I'm sure you can find a much easier and fulfilling caring doing 298132234 other things.

At the end of the day do what you want to do and what makes you feel good at the end of the day and during the day.

Works only one part of life and shouldn't be the common denominator to happiness.

It sounds like a lot of people here are lost on where their happiness comes from and their motives for working in IB/other areas, right or wrong?

Mar 10, 2012

IllinniProgrammer, I will hand it to you -- I have NEVER heard that argument in my life before.

If you really believe that everybody with more money than you is socially isolated and unhealthy and cries themselves to sleep at night, I mean, hey, more power to you...

Mar 10, 2012

If you really believe that everybody with more money than you is socially isolated and unhealthy and cries themselves to sleep at night, I mean, hey, more power to you...

No. I think most of them are very healthy. But spending too much money in ways that are too obvious hurts your ability to make friends with a lot of people and creates more uncertainty in your existing relationships.

Why buy a Ferrari if it doesn't make your life that much better and serves as a magnet to repel people who care about YOU not your wealth and a magnet for "friends" who like you for your Ferrari?

Mar 12, 2012
IlliniProgrammer:

If you really believe that everybody with more money than you is socially isolated and unhealthy and cries themselves to sleep at night, I mean, hey, more power to you...

No. I think most of them are very healthy. But spending too much money in ways that are too obvious hurts your ability to make friends with a lot of people and creates more uncertainty in your existing relationships.

Why buy a Ferrari if it doesn't make your life that much better and serves as a magnet to repel people who care about YOU not your wealth and a magnet for "friends" who like you for your Ferrari?

have you ever thought about the fact that as you make more money you start hanging out with people with more money?

Mar 10, 2012
leveredarb:

have you ever thought about the fact that as you make more money you start hanging out with people with more money?

During the workday, yes. When you get home to your friends and family, that changes.

And not everyone who makes money spends all of it. CC: Warren Buffett.

Mar 11, 2012
couchy:

Apparently why you shouldn't do banking for the money - which is the reason we are all here.

Wrong. For me, working in banking is like going through a 2-year business bootcamp. Also, am I the only guy who thinks all the modeling is kind of cool?

Money Never Sleeps? More like Money Never SUCKS amirite?!?!?!?

Mar 11, 2012

I strongly believe that you should do something that you can smile about if someone asks you your occupation.

At least I am the type of person who tries to work in a field where I can leverage my background as well as my skill sets, whatever it may be.

Obviously, I am not necessarily "in" for the monetary rewards but more for the psyche reward that has a larger meaning to it. It is a shame that a lot of people are in for the money that banking pays or other high paying line of works.

These are actually related to individuals' values and what they try to achieve in life and so forth.

Mar 11, 2012

Money doesn't make you happy, but lack of money will make you miserable...

What makes us happy is ultimately human and not particularly material. Social connectedness, spending time and having shared experiences with family, friends and loved ones. The older you get, your most treasured memories become the ones you shared with people you care about not your possessions or your solitary pursuits...

My favourite trip wasn't when I went on Safari or when I stayed at great hotel, it was when I went to a small coastal town with a few close friends and a girl that meant a lot to me...

Also, your income will fluctuate a lot in finance. You will have bad and good years so you won't necessarily have increasing consumption/income from one year to the next. You can expect your wealth (saving + investments) to fluctuate as well. This will be detrimental to your happiness and mental health if you tie up your happiness and self worth in your lifestyle and social status.

Your wealth, social status, prestige of your job/spouse won't matter much to your overall level of happiness if you haven't sorted out your relationship with your family, friends and loved ones or are in bad health. I think someone did research on the effect of winning the lottery on people and had similar results.

Finance is only worth pursuing if you have a real interest in the business, not just for the money. That goes for all kind of work unless you are making too little to meet your basic life and savings needs. You will regret cancelling your holiday plans to be in the office...

Dr Joe, I think you're falling into the economists' mistake of equating happiness with utility. They aren't the same thing... not even close.

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Mar 14, 2012
Relinquis:

Dr Joe, I think you're falling into the economists' mistake of equating happiness with utility. They aren't the same thing... not even close.

Perhaps my phrasing was unclear, but I don't intend to equate the two. In fact, I explicitly discuss the likely similar happiness levels of individuals with vastly different consumptions, and utilities. That being said, perhaps utility (or expectations of future utility, or the "PV" of future utility) would serve as a good s(t) in h(t) = a * s(t) + b * s'(t).

Mar 11, 2012
Dr Joe:
Relinquis:

Dr Joe, I think you're falling into the economists' mistake of equating happiness with utility. They aren't the same thing... not even close.

Perhaps my phrasing was unclear, but I don't intend to equate the two. In fact, I explicitly discuss the likely similar happiness levels of individuals with vastly different consumptions, and utilities. That being said, perhaps utility (or expectations of future utility, or the "PV" of future utility) would serve as a good s(t) in h(t) = a * s(t) + b * s'(t).

I must say, what you address Dr Joe is something I have long been debating among my peers. And having an opinion or even stating a hypothesis as you did with the job/life situation has been perceived as controversial when I've tried.

Nevertheless, relative poverty and relative wealth is of course to be taken into account on this matter. Usually the scope of normal people is not longer than their nearest community. Although urbanisation has led to a higher density population pr. sq ft/m we usually tend to compare ourselves to a small group of people.

If the person raising cattle in Sudan has two sheep and a goat, but he is the biggest provider of dairy products in his region - he is as happy, in theory, as the guy in a C-level position would be.

That being said, purely objectively money does enable more freedom. But one even more interesting topic I see less address, is the 'law of diminishing freedom' as wealth increases to extreme amounts. How often do you see Gates, or Ambramovich walking along the regular pedestrians?

-
Your Future Worldly Renowned Investor

Mar 11, 2012

as they say, if money doesn't buy you freedom than it's useless.

i know if i stay in banking i am not really going to have that "freedom" at least not for the next 5-7 years as I toil through at the junior levels. definitely not worth it for me to sacrifice my 20's/early 30's for potential gains down the road, time is our most important asset. july can't come sooner :)

Mar 11, 2012

As Gekko said: it's not about the money. It's about the game.

Mar 11, 2012

re: Because your lifestyle and expectations move up with your income

isn't this an inherit human trait? in ancient tribal societies would a man desire/work-hard to have a nice hut, and then when his friend made a 2-story hut would he not then covet/envy this?

I say money doesn't buy you happiness but it sure makes things a lot more fun, at least in the short term

First person that comes out this fucking door gets a... gets a lead salad, you understand?

Mar 11, 2012

Depends on your ambition and what you want in life.

All men just want 3 things:

  1. A well paying occupation
  2. A smoking hot gf/wife
  3. Toys

To get these things you need the following:

  1. Education/ Ability/ Intellect
  2. Money/ Style/ Humor
  3. Money

End of the fucking story

Mar 11, 2012
go.with.the.flow:

Depends on your ambition and what you want in life.

All men just want 3 things:

  1. A well paying occupation
  2. A smoking hot gf/wife
  3. Toys

To get these things you need the following:

  1. Education/ Ability/ Intellect
  2. Money/ Style/ Humor
  3. Money

End of the fucking story

Respect trumps 1 and 3, and helps get 2.

In the end, I think respect for ourselves and others and contentment with our decisions are the only things we really have. O, and true friends / family.

Mar 11, 2012

In my opinion, the key is to add value. If you are valuable, then you can get the time / money / leisure you want and develop your life the way YOU want to live it.

See: http://calnewport.com/blog/2012/03/09/youre-workin...
The most valuable / successful people are often not the most stressed.

Mar 11, 2012

.

Mar 11, 2012

"Whoever loves money never has money enough; whoever loves wealth is never satisfied with his income. This too is meaningless." Ecclesiastes 5:10

Mar 10, 2012
Virginia Tech 4ever:

"Whoever loves money never has money enough; whoever loves wealth is never satisfied with his income. This too is meaningless." Ecclesiastes 5:10

No mention of Hebrew 13:5, Matthew 6:24, or 1 Timothy 6:10?

To be clear, there's nothing wrong with money in and of itself. Some might even argue that money is the root of all material good. But if we love money more than our friends, our family, and our principles, we start to do things that are antisocial.

I also think conspicuous consumption is a form of addiction like gambling. I think learning to let go and stop buying into it turns us happier, stronger, wiser people than finally getting the money to buy that Bugatti Veyron makes us.

Mar 10, 2012

from comment on http://www.facebook.com/WallStreetOasis
"The Symbolic Power of Money - Reminders of Money Alter Social Distress and Physical Pain" (published in Psychological Science)

from http://www.csom.umn.edu/assets/127771.pdf

ABSTRACT--People often get what they want from the social
system, and that process is aided by social popularity or by
having money. Money can thus possibly substitute for social
acceptance in conferring the ability to obtain benefits from
the social system. Moreover, past work has suggested that
responses to physical pain and social distress share common
underlying mechanisms. Six studies tested relationships
among reminders of money, social exclusion, and physical
pain. Interpersonal rejection and physical pain caused desire for money to increase. Handling money (compared with
handling paper) reduced distress over social exclusion and
diminished the physical pain of immersion in hot water.
Being reminded of having spent money, however, intensified
both social distress and physical pain

WSO's COO (Chief Operating Orangutan) | My Linkedin

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Mar 11, 2012

The Bible speaks of money more than any other topic. There is a ton of wisdom and insight about how human beings relate to money. If nothing else, very prescient observations.

Mar 11, 2012

Guys... What is money? Its a store of value & medium of exchange. That's it. As long as you have enough for your basic living and socialising additional money becomes secondary to other parts of your life in terms of what makes you happy.

I know this is a difficult thing for many of you to grasp as I know a lot on WSO still haven't entered the working world or have a negative net worth due to school debts, but money doesn't matter as much as you think after a certain level (i.e. a level where you can hang out with your peers/social circle and can take care of your basics).

The poster who said that we just want a good job, hot chick and toys is wrong. What about your friends and family? What about experiencing new things and being engaged mentally/physically? These things are a lot more important than toys and for the most part are free or accessible with a middle class income.

If you were a miserable friendless cunt when you were of average income, then you will most likely remain a miserable friendless cunt when you are rich.

Back to Banking / Finance..
Most people need to work for a living... Finance is no different, so yes you are in it for the money so to speak, but there are other jobs out there. The choice of why to go into finance as opposed to another career/job is an important one. You need to understand the trade off you are making and why you are making it.... it's also something worth revisiting from year to year.

Mar 22, 2012
Relinquis:

Guys... What is money? Its a store of value & medium of exchange. That's it.

That's why my quote is "Man made money, money never made the man." Success and being passionate about what you do should motivate you in the work place, not compensation; high compensation is just a by-product of success and passion.

Happiness to me is doing what I want to do. Simple. And right now I am very lucky to being doing what I want to do.

I like you, Relinquis.

Mar 10, 2012

What motivates billionaires to earn more?

Mar 11, 2012
manbearpig:

What motivates billionaires to earn more?

Habit is a big factor... Have you read Warren Buffett's biography?

He was a miserable lonely kid who loved making money growing up, was a miserable lonely guy who loved making money as a young man and is currently a misrable lonely old guy who loves making money... The common denominator of his friends during his life has been money making, they're all investors, business people or CEOs like Bill Gates. I don't recall a single friendship in his biography where money making wasn't involved.

Pretty shitty life in my opinion, but I suppose it works for him.

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Mar 12, 2012
Relinquis:
manbearpig:

What motivates billionaires to earn more?

Habit is a big factor... Have you read Warren Buffett's biography?

He was a miserable lonely kid who loved making money growing up, was a miserable lonely guy who loved making money as a young man and is currently a misrable lonely old guy who loves making money... The common denominator of his friends during his life has been money making, they're all investors, business people or CEOs like Bill Gates. I don't recall a single friendship in his biography where money making wasn't involved.

Pretty shitty life in my opinion, but I suppose it works for him.

People always say "If I had Buffef money, I would (insert something fun)." The thing is someone can be happy as a result of money if they didn't have it before. If someone gave you $10k today, you would be pretty darn happy. On the other hand, if you love making money and love money itself, that $10k leads to "how can I make more" or "how does this 10k fare amongst how much I have made before" - point being is that you will be miserable in the pursuit of happiness rather than achieving happiness which you overlook.

Mar 10, 2012
Relinquis:
manbearpig:

What motivates billionaires to earn more?

Habit is a big factor... Have you read Warren Buffett's biography?

He was a miserable lonely kid who loved making money growing up, was a miserable lonely guy who loved making money as a young man and is currently a misrable lonely old guy who loves making money... The common denominator of his friends during his life has been money making, they're all investors, business people or CEOs like Bill Gates. I don't recall a single friendship in his biography where money making wasn't involved.

Pretty shitty life in my opinion, but I suppose it works for him.

Fair point, although I still can't relate to it. Money should be a means to an end, not an end in itself. Once I have enough money to do whatever I want, I can't imagine being obsessed with growing my bank account any more...

Mar 12, 2012

What it really comes down to is...

you dont realize how much $ has the potential to influence your happiness, until you dont have ANY!

Mar 11, 2012

Ok... which one of you buffett fanboys threw monkey shit at my post above? It doesn't matter. Read his authorised biography by Alice Schroeder and name 3 friendships that he had which had nothing to do with money. That's a pretty miserable state. http://www.amazon.com/Snowball-Warren-Buffett-Business-Life/dp/0553805096

Read the book and tell me that having money has made him any happier than if he made an upper middle class income instead of billions. The guy seems to derive his only pleasure from the process of making money, not having money.

Open your minds, there is more to life than idolising billionaires or celebrities. After you've met a few you realise that they are just as normal and banal as most other people on average.

Nov 23, 2013
Relinquis:

Ok... which one of you buffett fanboys threw monkey shit at my post above? It doesn't matter. Read his authorised biography by Alice Schroeder and name 3 friendships that he had which had nothing to do with money. That's a pretty miserable state.

Read the book and tell me that having money has made him any happier than if he made an upper middle class income instead of billions. The guy seems to derive his only pleasure from the process of making money, not having money.

Open your minds, there is more to life than idolising billionaires or celebrities. After you've met a few you realise that they are just as normal and banal as most other people on average.

Year old thread but...just had to reply...

relinquis...I think you have a tunnel vision of happiness which is to have meaningful relationships or to spend most of your valued time having memorable experiences with real friends and loved ones. You should also open your mind a bit more because not every one has the same upbringing and/or psychological makeup to want the same things. And if you had the freedom of not being financially constrained, I can think of a less productive way of living a truly fulfilled life spending most your time on making contrived memories with your treasured loved ones (even your children) doing other seemingly banal things. That is not really happiness, that is just another form of pleasure not unlike another purchase of a new yacht. think a few other in this thread aptly pointed out that happiness is relative...

There are all kinds individuals, loners, introverts, extroverts etc so don't make it sound like it's something inherent in human beings to want to have relationships like you described/imagined or even being judgemental to those who have not had such good luck meeting good natured people in their lives, children who are being conditioned to hate since they were born. Not saying people shouldn't do those things, but you shouldn't judge those who find joy and confidence in other things even if their ONLY joy is to make money like Warren Buffett . Your pleasure is as good as his pleasure or the pleasure of a Brazilian drug lord living the life until he is gunned down by another or the ibanker choosing the single life living on models and bottles till he gets tired. There is also definitely more to life than a banal vacation you had with your 5 year old up in lake tahoe.

Mar 13, 2012

Money doesn't matter until it matters.

The point IP made about the Hedonic Treadmill is very true. I can't remember what book I was reading but it was about some European dude and he said something like 'The moment my net worth reached a billion euros, all I could think about was what it would be like to be worth 2 billion'

If I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses - Henry Ford

Mar 13, 2012

I'm surprised there have not been more responses to Dr Joe's earlier post, in which he presented the intriguing model

"
h(t) = a * s(t) + b * s'(t) where
h(t) is your happiness at time t
s(t) is your "success level" or "level of accomplishment" or "quantity of things you own" or perhaps even wealth, to be simplistic, at time t
a might be your "satisfaction" constant
b might be your "ambition" constant
"

From my experience, people tend to assume (in typical, non-philosophical conversations) that everyone's happiness is essentially described by the case of a=1 and b=0, which implies that
h(t) = s(t),
meaning that one's happiness is simply a measure of one's (relative) "success level," as Dr Joe defines above.

The fact that after completing a summer analyst gig and accepting a full-time job offer, I still felt compelled to pull all-nighters illustrates that for me, "b" has significant weight in determining my overall happiness--i.e. I am happiest when I am learning new things and moving forward, despite how much I may know already. I think humans have evolved to place a lot of value on the process of growing, whether through developing skills or acquiring more knowledge, wealth, or wisdom, regardless of how much they may already possess.

For example, the idea presented earlier that sub-Saharan happiness levels could be comparable to those of some NYC CFO's, while seemingly false, seemed reasonable according to this theory. If we assume that satisfaction s(t) is defined by our immediate sub-culture (a hypothesis with much empirical support regarding relative happiness [e.g. Bhutan]), then one interpretation of the model could suggest that, going along with our sub-Saharan example, the act of providing food to a local village (high s'(t)) that was previously impoverished could lead to a greater h(t) for a poor African farmer than that of a NYC CFO whose bonus was recently slashed, preventing him from taking that long-awaited trip to Monaco (low or negative s'(t)). Alternatively, assuming pure stagnation (i.e. s'(t)=0) on the part of both the African farmer and the NYC CFO, their happiness levels could still be equal if they possess similar s(t) levels defined relative to their immediate subcultures. If we scale by mean and standard deviation of each subculture of interest to obtain a standardized measure of satisfaction at time t, we could have that the African farmer and NYC CFO have equal standardized s(t) values despite the NYC CFO having significantly more in absolute terms.

The key point is that our happiness is determined not only by what we have achieved (relative to our subculture and constructed notions of success and failure), but by what we are currently achieving. In many cases (especially that of the ambitious college student), the latter effect dominates the former.

Mar 11, 2012

understatement, are you really making the argument that corporate/career achievement is what makes one happy? easy on the corporate kool-aid.

No one on their death bed says... with tears running down their face... "I wish I had squeezed out a few more basis points of return on my 2011 vintage fund".

The level of indoctrination on WSO is alarming. What you're describing isn't happiness, its a model for keeping up with the Joneses (from a career or consumption perspective). They aren't the same thing.

Mar 14, 2012

understatement - interesting analysis, thanks for the comments. One thing we seem to differ on is the relative s(t), as opposed to absolute. I intended it as a perhaps absolute measure, hence the importance of the derivative, while if you measure s(t) relatively, things become quite different, since the surroundings are already incorporated into the measure. Overall, I think your interpretation would lead to higher a's and lower b's.

Secondly, I made an oversight in the original formulation of my model. The second term in h(t) = a * s(t) + b * s'(t) should be b * s'(t)/s(t) so as to measure the % change in s(t), rather than the absolute change, since absolute changes in s(t) mean more or less to different individuals, based on current levels of s(t).

Relinquis, I don't think that is at all what he is saying, and that was certainly not the intention of my model. While understatement may choose to disagree with me here, I treat s(t) as some measure of, lets say, % of the world that would switch places with you at any given time (ignoring informational asymmetries and other such frictions). Alternatively, you could think of it this way: what % of the population of the world would you switch lives with? The lower the percent, the better off you are in your own life, whether that be in terms of finances, human capital, emotional satisfaction, etc. I suppose I make the assumption of, amongst other things, traded assets and efficient markets, to avoid individual preference conflicts, but that is not too relevant. Furthermore, to be mathematically correct, s(t) would need to scale in some non-linear fashion, especially as it approaches 1 (almost everyone would switch places with you), but that is not the point and I will not go into the details.

Relinquis - what do you define happiness as? Do you disagree with the above formulation of s(t)?

Mar 11, 2012

I see what you are getting at Dr Joe. While it is interesting from a conceptual level it isn't that useful (or realistic?) a model. Three problems areas in this model:

1 - The model assumes that what increases one's level of happiness is their success (achieving milestones), accumulation of wealth, goods, utility and such. This inherently assumes that these are the things that add to one's happiness and that happiness is something to be acquired or is an end goal of a process, rather than a by-product of balance and experiencing life. I don't see it that way.

2 - Thinking in terms of what % of the population we would switch with has the same effect as point 1 above (see example below). They both inherently assume that happiness is a relative "keeping up with the Joneses" affair or situation dependent (usually material situation because that's what we can observe).

3 - The further you get from your immediate peer group the more information asymmetries dominate. We tend to think that everyone who has less money than us is miserable and that all wealthy people we like have great lives (the Hollywood effect).

Example:
For example, framing one of the measures of happiness as what % of the population you would switch lives with inherently assumes that happiness is determined by one's current circumstances (i.e. wealth, nature of work, family situation, location, etc...) as opposed to one's personal experience & outlook. Conceptually what do we mean by switching lives with someone? I wouldn't want to change places with Warren Buffett if it would mean inheriting his failed personal relationships and limited life experience outside of business. That would make me miserable. However, would being as wealthy as he is make me more happy? Yes in the sense that it would be nice not to have to worry about my financial security, but this can be achieved with far less money and is a far lower factor than my relationships and my ability to live freely and pursue my interests.

How do I define happiness?
I think happiness is far less material than we usually think of it and is wired into our nature. I don't think one can engineer happiness into a society or even one's life. I don't see it as a goal or something to be acquired, rather as an outlook/mindset or an experience/state of being. People talk about the pursuit of happiness as if happiness is a goal as opposed to the by-product of living a balanced and engaged life.

When I think of my happiest times they are the ones where I have both balance in my life and am excited/engaged in something I enjoy. Look at little children. They are the embodiment of happiness because they are carefree, excited about life, active and have strong bonds with the people around them.

If you have a good job, nice girlfriend/boyfriend, strong family relationships but lack excitement in your life you won't be happy. You'll just be content, maybe even a little depressed if you're a young type-A guy. On the other hand, if all you have is making money, going to parties, travel, encounters with beautiful strangers and such you will feel something missing at some point and no matter how big the next thrill is it won't satisfy you or fill that void.

I think we run into problems when we think that one part of our life is all that matters. My happiest peers aren't the ones with the most money, although none of my happy peers are poor/face financial hardship.

You guys should check out he Paul Tudor Jones thread Macro posted: http://www.wallstreetoasis.com/forums/rare-ptj-int... some relevant quotes.

Q: It was widely published that in 1987 you reportedly made between $80 million and $100 million ? more than anybody on Wall Street. How did that make you feel?

Paul Tudor Jones: At the time, I was young enough to enjoy that. I was in my early 30's and that was exciting, but the older you get you realize that at the end of the day the amount of money you have has absolutely zero bearing on how you feel about yourself and the quality of your life. It becomes a very shallow measure of a person's worth. I have a great wife and four great kids now and that would be my crowning achievement.

Q: What are some perceptions and priorities of yours that have changed over the years?

Paul Tudor Jones: I think there's a natural progression that everyone goes through. The older you get, the more you'll realize that a quality life is one that has an extraordinary balance in it. The guy that's working at 75 years of age and still running a company, that doesn't have any appeal to me because I think his life is out of balance. If the only thing that he can find that's that satisfying to him is being involved in a profession with something, I think you've got to have more balance. In my 20's all I cared about was being financially successful and today I look to strive for a more balanced life. In that context though, when I come to work I'm as competitive as anybody you'll meet and I clearly look forward to the day when I have the best performance of my peers, the macro hedge funds, for the year, which hopefully will be this year.

Q: When are you going to retire?

Paul Tudor Jones: I have a son that just turned three and I would unequivocally continue to trade until he went to college. At that point I think I'd probably be airborne hunting and fishing all over the globe every day in my life. I don't even necessarily need to be hunting and fishing, I just love to be out doors.

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Mar 14, 2012

Whoever said money doesn't make you happy either doesn't have any or can't budget properly.

Mar 15, 2012

I'm gonna go ahead & admit to being the douchebag that just wants more money than his peers for the mere sake of it.

There...I said it.

Mar 10, 2012
SaucyBacon85:

I'm gonna go ahead & admit to being the douchebag that just wants more money than his peers for the mere sake of it.

There...I said it.

That's fine. And I'm the douchebag who quietly has 3x your bank balance and you always wonder why he acts like he thinks he's better than you and doesn't care about your car, house, or vacations. :D

Mar 15, 2012
IlliniProgrammer:
SaucyBacon85:

I'm gonna go ahead & admit to being the douchebag that just wants more money than his peers for the mere sake of it.

There...I said it.

That's fine. And I'm the douchebag who quietly has 3x your bank balance and you always wonder why he acts like he thinks he's better than you and doesn't care about your car, house, or vacations. :D

Haha! Touche.

Mar 15, 2012

Fly private and then say money doesn't buy happiness. Money may not buy 100% happiness but neither does being in a suburban home with 2 little shit head kids who listen to Limp Biscuit...

Mar 16, 2012

Like KingKong said, some people aren't in it just for the money.
Robert Shiller recently defended finance professionals in an article at Bloomberg. He said:

"This kind of thinking is perennial and fundamental. But the finance professions also attract people who are relatively invulnerable to cognitive dissonance: traders or investment managers who delight in the truth that is ultimately revealed in the market. Troubled by hypocrisy, they seek vindication not by sounding right but by being proved right. Many financial theorists have tried to represent people as merely profit maximizers, perfectly selfish and perfectly rational. But people really do care about their own self-esteem, and profit maximization is at best only a part of that."

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-03-06/finance-i...

Play games and get a finance job or internship with ConnectCubed

Mar 18, 2012

Money opens new doors of oppurtunities.

The Four E's of investment
"The greatest Enemies of the Equity investor are Expenses and Emotions."- Warren Buffet

Mar 18, 2012
couchy:

Because your lifestyle and expectations move up with your income.

Apparently why you shouldn't do banking for the money - which is the reason we are all here.

Mar 18, 2012

WSO: where nerds come to use equations to define happiness
gtfo

Mar 18, 2012

The GS head of Germany, Alexander Dibelius, once famously said: Money does not have decreasing marginal utility

Mar 11, 2012
Il Cavaliere:

The GS head of Germany, Alexander Dibelius, once famously said: Money does not have decreasing marginal utility

your time as a living person is finite... as you age, you have less time.. it becomes more valuable, you're less willing to slave away

Mar 18, 2012

I have to agree with Relinquis in this thread. Happiness is a state of mind. Different things and experiences bring varying amounts of happiness to people. For some, the most happiness is found by spending time with friends and family. For others, it is successfully closing a deal. Heck, for some just knowing that they have $X million in their bank account is enough to make them feel good about themselves. The message of the various quotes mentioned in this thread are that it is important for people to seek what makes THEM happy, and often times that thing is not money. It is very possible for someone to live a modest life (financially) and be happier than an army of millionaires.

I'll use myself as an example. Ever since I left banking, I've decided that my happiness takes precedence over my career. I no longer put in "face time." I duck out early some days to go to sporting events. I use all of my vacation days. I get my work done and maintain a carefree attitude. I never stress out over work or anything in my personal life. Sure, I may get fired for this behavior, but I refuse to spend my life accumulating wealth and delaying the things that make me happy. The result is been absolutely amazing. In fact, a part of me secretly hopes that I do get fired so I can truly escape the rat race.

I tell this to people and they think I'm batshit nuts. However, the happiest people I know are not those with a lot of money --- it's those with a lot of time and mobility.

    • 1
Mar 18, 2012
CompBanker:

I have to agree with Relinquis in this thread. Happiness is a state of mind. Different things and experiences bring varying amounts of happiness to people. For some, the most happiness is found by spending time with friends and family. For others, it is successfully closing a deal. Heck, for some just knowing that they have $X million in their bank account is enough to make them feel good about themselves. The message of the various quotes mentioned in this thread are that it is important for people to seek what makes THEM happy, and often times that thing is not money. It is very possible for someone to live a modest life (financially) and be happier than an army of millionaires.

I'll use myself as an example. Ever since I left banking, I've decided that my happiness takes precedence over my career. I no longer put in "face time." I duck out early some days to go to sporting events. I use all of my vacation days. I get my work done and maintain a carefree attitude. I never stress out over work or anything in my personal life. Sure, I may get fired for this behavior, but I refuse to spend my life accumulating wealth and delaying the things that make me happy. The result is been absolutely amazing. In fact, a part of me secretly hopes that I do get fired so I can truly escape the rat race.

I tell this to people and they think I'm batshit nuts. However, the happiest people I know are not those with a lot of money --- it's those with a lot of time and mobility.

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000111001001101111011011100110
0111011011000111100100100000011
000010110011101110010011001010
1100101001000000111011101101001
011101000110100000100000011101000
1101000011010010111001100100000011
011010110000101101110

I'm gonna get that bish some binary

Bishes love binary

Kind Regards,

Bin_Ban

Mar 19, 2012
CompBanker:

I'll use myself as an example. Ever since I left banking, I've decided that my happiness takes precedence over my career. I no longer put in "face time." I duck out early some days to go to sporting events. I use all of my vacation days. I get my work done and maintain a carefree attitude. I never stress out over work or anything in my personal life. Sure, I may get fired for this behavior, but I refuse to spend my life accumulating wealth and delaying the things that make me happy. The result is been absolutely amazing. In fact, a part of me secretly hopes that I do get fired so I can truly escape the rat race.

I tell this to people and they think I'm batshit nuts. However, the happiest people I know are not those with a lot of money --- it's those with a lot of time and mobility.

I think we should drink together. No homo

Mar 19, 2012

It doesn't matter how much money you make unless you let your wealth define you. Since there can only be one "richest" man in the world, and even he will be overtaken during his life, the only winning move here is not to play.

That being said, I do like nice sunglasses.

Mar 21, 2012
Comment
Nov 23, 2013

"He that hath a beard is more than a youth, and he that hath no beard is less than a man." -- William Shakespeare, Much Ado About Nothing