Money

ZIP Codes: What Does it Say About You? West v. East Germany

Curated by CLAI

ZIP CODE DEMOGRAPHICS AND LIFESTYLE: Want to know what your zip code says about you? Learn about the people and culture of an area with ZIP Lookup.

  • Arlington, VA: 56% Metro Renters & 44% Laptops and Lattes. We’re affluent, well-educated singles or partner couples, who hold professions in business, finance, legal, computer, or entertainment. Young, mobile, or still in school, we live along or with a roommate in rented apartments. Long hours and hard work don’t deter us. Most of our income goes to rent, fashions, and latest technology. We live close to our jobs, so we can either walk or take a cab. We practice yoga, go skiing, and attend Pilates.
  • Bensonhurst, Brooklyn, NY: Asians, particularly Chinese, are concentrated here. Nearly half are foreign born and 1/3 don’t speak English. Long commutes are the way of life. Spending is careful; we’re not brand loyal and use coupons when we can. Dancing, casino gambling, eating out at our favorite restaurants consume our leisure time.
Income distribution in Arlington, VA.

Income distribution in Arlington, VA. (ESRI)

West & East Germany: Those in West Germany have greater disposable income, lower rates of unemployment, more young people, more foreigners, and more trash. East Germans have more childcare, bigger farms, and higher flu vaccination rates.

Disposable income in West Germany v. East Germany (WAPO)

German statistical office. Visualization: Gene Thorp, WAPO.

Rich, Middle Class, & Poor Jobs. Washington DC Highest Housing Cost

Curated by CLAI

JOBS FOR RICH, MIDDLE CLASS & POOR: Looking across incomes and rankings there are a couple of interesting things to note:

  • It’s good to be the boss: Being a manager is the most common job from the 70th percentile up to the 99th.
  • Doctors and lawyers are only found in the top two brackets. (There’s a reason our grandmothers wanted us to go to med school or law school.)
  • Sales supervisors are well-represented across all groups. It’s a broad job title that applies to people making as little as $12,000 a year all the way up to six figures.
Jobs Up & Down Income Ladder

Data from 2012, adjusted for inflation. Source: IPUMS-USA, University of Minnesota; American Community Survey Credit: Quoctrung Bui/NPR

DC MOST EXPENSIVE CITY: Wait a second – is D.C. really #1 in housing costs? More than NY? Yes. Washingtonians spend more on housing and related expenses (utilities, furnishings and equipment) than New Yorkers and San Franciscans.

  1. Washington, DC
  2. San Francisco, CA
  3. New York, NY
  4. San Diego, CA
  5. Baltimore, MD
  6. Los Angeles, CA
  7. Seattle, WA
  8. Boston, MA
  9. Philadelphia, PA
  10. Chicago, IL
Most expensive cities to live in the United States

Most expensive cities to live in the United States (Credit: US Bureau of Labor Statistics)

Docked Pay for Massive Debt? Women Pay Women Less?

Curated by CLAI

MASSIVE DEBT? U.S. Federal law allows up to 25% of your wages garnished or docked often over credit card debt, medical bill, or student loans. Check out how much your state (law) protects your paycheck.

Wage Garnishment


Wage Garnishment (National Consumer Law Center Report: “No Fresh Start”)

WOMEN GAVE LESS TO WOMEN: Both men and women made lower offers, on average, when the responder was female. Male proposers offered an average of $4.73 to male respondents, but only $4.43 to women. More painful yet was the behavior of female proposers, who, on average, offered $5.13 to men but only $4.31 to women. It seems that women were seen as softies who were willing to settle for less — and the discrimination was worse coming from the women themselves.

Colleges with the Highest Salaries – Should I get an MBA?

Curated by CLAI

SCHOOLS WITH HIGHEST SALARIES EARLY & MID CAREER: Technical abilities are highly valued among recent graduates, which explains why a student who graduates from an engineering program at California Institute of Technology will likely be better compensated, at least up front, than a Harvard graduate with an English degree. Those specialized skills offer a comparative salary edge for only a handful of years before that advantage begins to dissipate–and the salary benefits of a holistic, liberal arts education begin to catch up.

Colleges with the highest starting salaries

Colleges with the highest starting salaries (WAPO)

SHOULD YOU GET AN MBA? Here are some questions you should ask yourself.

  • Leadership & Management: Do the MBA programs I’m considering provide practical leadership and management training?
  • Credential & Brand: How are MBAs perceived in the markets I am in or would like to enter? What signals does an MBA send in these markets? What stereotypes (both positive and negative) might I face as an MBA? What is the specific reputation of the MBA programs I’m considering? How are these schools and their alumni viewed within my desired markets?
  • Community & Network: What do I know about the students at the MBA programs I’m considering? Are they like-minded peers? Do I see myself learning alongside them? What do I know about the alumni networks of these programs? How active are they? Are they concentrated in geographic areas and professional fields of interest to me?

Money & Bras: From Corsets to Brassieres, States with the Biggest Bang for Your Buck

Curated by CLAI

THE BRA: Women today breathe a little easier — thanks to a World War I metal shortage. Since corset frames were mostly made of metal, which was needed for ammunition and other military supplies, in 1917 the U.S. War Industries Board asked American women to stop buying them.

  • Caresse Crosby patented the first modern bra in the U.S. in 1910.
  • Some historians credit William and Ida Rosenthal, founders of Maidenform, with introducing the A-, B-, C- and D-cup system in the late 1920s or early ’30s, while others claim it was S.H. Camp and Company.
  • When the androgynous flapper look came into vogue in the Roaring Twenties, so-called bandeau bras — which flattened the breasts — became the popular choice.
  • Today, nearly 95% of women in Western countries wear bras, which translates to a billion-dollar industry dominated by Victoria’s Secret and corporations like Hanes.
Brassiere in 1914

Brassiere in 1914

STATES WITH BEST BANG FOR YOUR BUCK: You’d squeeze the most out of $100 in Mississippi, where you could use it to buy $115.74 worth of goods and services, relative to the national average. Arkansas comes next, followed by Missouri, Alabama and South Dakota. The state where $100 falls flattest is Hawaii, where that same $100 gets you only $85.32. (D.C., though not a state, is even worse: It would buy you just $84.60 in goods.)

Relative Value of $100 in States in the U.S. (WAPO)