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An Investment Manager Dishes on the Richest

Rarely do we get to hear criticism of the American oligarchy from within the ranks of its crowning institution: the financial services industry. This anonymous author, who handles investments for the wealthiest 1 percent of Americans, takes us on a brief tour of numbers through the financial considerations of the über-rich. What these people believe they must earn to feel secure will appall most readers, and the excerpt below is sure to curdle some blood. —ARK

Who Rules America?:

Recently, I spoke with a younger client who retired from a major investment bank in her early thirties, net worth around $8M. We can estimate that she had to earn somewhere around twice that, or $14M-$16M, in order to keep $8M after taxes and live well along the way, an impressive accomplishment by such an early age. Since I knew she held a critical view of investment banking, I asked if her colleagues talked about or understood how much damage was created in the broader economy from their activities. Her answer was that no one talks about it in public but almost all understood and were unbelievably cynical, hoping to exit the system when they became rich enough.

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