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Is an annual household income of $______ the magic number?

Perri Ormont Blumberg
February 28, 2018

The Beatles famously crooned that money can't buy you love. But can a bank full of green buy you happiness?

Ah, the age old question. According to a new study, money can indeed bring more happiness, and it's a very specific amount: An annual household income of $105,000 or greater.

In recent research published in the journal Nature Human Behaviour, an increase in happiness relative to additional household income was not seen beyond $105,000 in the U.S., and $95,000 globally.

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Scientists at the University of Virginia and Purdue University used data from the Gallup World Poll, which includes over 1.7 million participants in 164 countries. Of course, well-being is a subjective thing and we'll never have an exact number where dollars translate to ecstasy. However, practically, these findings imply that those with a household income of $105,000 a year, are no better off in terms of happiness than those families with an annual household income of $150,000. That is, the higher your salary (if you live alone) or household income increases after you've hit $105,000 doesn't parallel an equal boost in happiness.

As for our take on the findings? We think happiness is found on Disney rides, chasing butterflies, and sipping a tall glass of sweat tea with bourbon — not cash.