This Day On The Street
Continue to site right-arrow
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here
Stocks Under $10 with 50-100% upside potential - 14 days FREE!

The Millionaires Say They're Rich When They Have $5 Million

Stocks in this article: UBS

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Americans are redefining what they mean by wealth, and that redefinition is unmistakably trending upward.

UBS' (UBS) Investor Watch, the fourth report from the New York City-based wealth manager on Americans' perception of money and wealth, says U.S. investors measure the doorway to true wealth at $5 million. In addition, the report concludes that most U.S. millionaires don't consider themselves wealthy.

Of course, Americans can't settle on just one definition of wealth -- we have a barometer that doesn't have a dollar sign attached, according to UBS.

"Investors are telling us that wealth isn't just about money. It's about being able to do what you want to do when you want to do it," says Emily Pachuta, director of investor insights at UBS Wealth Management Americas. "If you ask, 'What is wealthy?' we observe that it's about having no financial constraints, holding a lot of cash, taking care of family."

No wonder that's become a measure of wealth: According to UBS, 80% of U.S. adults with adult children are supporting those adult children financially, and many times supporting aging parents or grandchildren.

Usually that means paying for college, giving family members a place to live, co-signing a loan or subsidizing high-end purchases such as new homes or cars.

Americans also aim for a so-called "cash cushion" of about 20% in their savings. When they hit that level, U.S. adults seem to exhale and figure it's a good time to invest more aggressively.

Some more highlights from the report:

  • 70% of investors worth more than $1 million surveyed by the firm say they are "not wealthy."
  • 50% of Americans define wealth as having "no financial constraints," while 10% define it as "never having to work again."
  • Being able to afford good health care services, especially long-term care, is the goal of 27% of U.S. millionaires.
  • Affluent American say they enjoy taking care of their family financially. Helping grandchildren tops the list, followed by helping adult children.

Wealthier Americans also use cash as a financial salve, keeping enough available to reduce investment risk. UBS calls that a "peace of mind" financial strategy.

"Investors are using significant cash holdings as a type of 'security blanket' to give themselves peace of mind, but also to allow them to feel comfortable getting out there and participating in the market again," Pachuta says. "This has translated to a greater confidence -- and faith -- in the economy over the long term despite investors' expectations of continued market volatility in the near term."

Affluent Americans are also largely bullish on the U.S. economy, with 67% of those surveyed by UBS say the "economy is strengthening."

Select the service that is right for you!

Action Alerts PLUS
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link actively manage a real portfolio and reveal their money management tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
  • Weekly roundups
TheStreet Quant Ratings
Try it NOW
Only $49.95/yr

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
  • Upgrade/downgrade alerts
Stocks Under $10
Try it NOW

David Peltier, uncovers low dollar stocks with extraordinary upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
  • Weekly roundups
Dividend Stock Advisor
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer's protege, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Alerts when market news affect the portfolio
  • Bi-weekly updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Real Money Pro
Try it NOW

All of Real Money, plus 15 more of Wall Street's sharpest minds delivering actionable trading ideas, a comprehensive look at the market, and fundamental and technical analysis.

Product Features:
  • Real Money + Doug Kass Plus 15 more Wall Street Pros
  • Intraday commentary & news
  • Ultra-actionable trading ideas
Options Profits
Try it NOW

Our options trading pros provide daily market commentary and over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • 100+ monthly options trading ideas
  • Actionable options commentary & news
  • Real-time trading community
  • Options TV
To begin commenting right away, you can log in below using your Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, OpenID or Yahoo login credentials. Alternatively, you can post a comment as a "guest" just by entering an email address. Your use of the commenting tool is subject to multiple terms of service/use and privacy policies - see here for more details.
Submit an article to us!


DOW 17,959.44 +154.64 0.87%
S&P 500 2,078.54 +7.89 0.38%
NASDAQ 4,781.4240 +16.0440 0.34%

Brokerage Partners

Rates from

  • Mortgage
  • Credit Cards
  • Auto

Free Newsletters from TheStreet

My Subscriptions:

After the Bell

Before the Bell

Booyah! Newsletter

Midday Bell

TheStreet Top 10 Stories

Winners & Losers

Register for Newsletters
Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs