A report released on Monday by U.S. Trust surveyed 684 adults located in the United States with $3 million plus of “investible assets”.

77% of respondents stated that they were raised in a middle class home or lower, and 19% said they were “poor”.  All credit their success to three distinct factors: Hard work, ambition and family upbringing.  Those surveyed also commented that they felt that these influences were more important than connections, or innate talent.

Chris Heilmann, the Chief Fiduciary Executive for U.S. Trust says, “The points seem to be so traditional in nature.”

He commented that their “formula for success” appears to be more about deeply held family values as opposed to receiving an inheritance or existing family wealth.  72% of those surveyed commented that they worked harder, 64% said that they are more willing to sacrifice, 76% report that they are more disciplined than average, and 76% believe building a business increases wealth.

When respondents were asked about their home environment growing up, about 80% claimed their parents were firm disciplinarians.  2 out of three people had parents who tolerated failures.  Their parents held academic achievement, financial discipline, and work participation in high regard.  These factors had a heavy emphasis in their homes.

When asked about marital success, 86% responded that they were married, and 75% were still married to their first spouse.

Heilmann commented that the results were “refreshing, encouraging and a bit surprising” but also noted that “the American dream is still alive.

For further information on the report in its entirety, please visit the following website.


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