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What Income Class Am I

Jacob Kubik
By Jacob Kubik. Updated: January 16, 2017
What Income Class Am I

The amount of income you earn is a big deal for everyone. It's almost second nature for humans to compare themselves to others and see where they stand on the food chain. Sometimes it's hard work that puts you above the rest or sometimes you can be lucky enough to win the lottery, but your income level does make a huge difference as to how you live your life.If you've ever asked yourself: What Income Class Am I? Then take a look at this article.

  1. What your income level is based on
  2. The Upper Class
  3. The Middle Class
  4. Poverty

What your income level is based on

As you might expect, and what might be very obvious, your income class is based upon the amount of income you receive annually. Those earning less will be located towards the lower levels of the class system and those earning more will be towards the top of the income class system. The income class system is broken down into three categories: the upper class, the middle class, and poverty.

What Income Class Am I - What your income level is based on

The Upper Class

The highest class in the American income class system is the upper class. The upper class consists of the top 5% off all citizens, while the top 1% of Americans consist of the highest earning individuals. For this reason the upper class is sometimes referred to as the 5% or 1%. The upper 1% of all earners owns more money than the rest of the 99% combined. You are considered in the top 5% of Americans if you make $150,000 or more a year, and if you make more than $250,000 a year you are considered to be in the top 1%.

  • These individuals tend to be highly educated and work white collar jobs.
  • They can be either new money or old money. New money have only had their money for under two generations and they've worked for it while the old money has possessed their wealth for more than two generations and haven't necessarily had to work for it.

The Middle Class

The next class below the upper class is the middle class. The middle class includes the vast majority of the American population and is split into three groups: the upper middle class, the lower middle class, and the working class.

The Upper-Middle Class

The upper middle class is right below the upper class, is predominately males, and populated by individuals with post-secondary education. These individuals are also in the top third of the population for income and make $100,000 or more annually.

The Lower-Middle Class

The lower-middle class consists of households with some college education, but they don't have the degree necessary to move on to a higher paying position. These individuals consist of lower level white collar workers who earn anywhere from $60,000 to $32,500.

The Working Class

The working class is located at the bottom of the middle class and is generally made up of blue collar workers. The working class usually posses much less education than the rest of the middle and upper classes. They are usually paid by the hour and make anywhere from $32,500 to $23,050 a year.


The last and final class sitting at the very bottom is the poverty level class. Households in this class do not make enough money to pay for life essential necessities based upon the poverty line set by the United States government. The current poverty line for a family of four is $18,000 to $23,050 annually.

What Income Class Am I - Poverty

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