The Black Millionaire Next Door

by James & Miel on November 28, 2006 · 0 comments

Today’s posting is an interview with J.G. Thomas and Monifa Thomas from the Tavis Smiley show on National Public Radio. The purpose of the interview was to discuss Tomas and Tomas’ work describing African-Americans wealth. Since you’re probably short on time, I’ll briefly describe the results of their research here.

The main finding of their study was that most wealthy African-Americans did NOT become wealthy through sports or entertainment. In fact, athletes and entertainers represent only 10% of the total Black millionaires. Fully 85% of African-American millionaires became so by starting a successful business.

Their second finding was that African-American millionaires differ from everyone else in that:
1) read a lot, 2) travel a lot and 3) live below their means by not spending more than they earn.

Finally, Thomas and Thomas got their data from state and federal tax returns as well as from data on real estate transactions. As everyone knows, there are some disadvantages with this type of data, but its better than some studies of wealthy people (e.g. Stanley and Danko’s millionaire next door) which have problems with representativeness.

Click HERE for the NPR Interview.

Best,

James

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