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Felix Dennis’s message to bankers: You’re not really rich until you have £16m of liquid assets

Felix Dennis, before he made £500m

Felix Dennis, before he made £500m

Felix Dennis, the publishing mogul and self-described, ‘overweight, cigarette-smoking, malt-whisky swilling idiot with too much money,’ has passed away.  Now seems an appropriate moment, therefore, to re-post the article below, along with your comments. You can read the full text of Felix Dennis’s book, ‘How to get rich’, here. 

Entrepreneur Felix Dennis has some novel ideas about what constitutes being rich.

In his book, Dennis (net worth £500m) categorises richness as follows:

Comfortably poor: £50k-£199k in liquid assets; £1m-£2m in total assets

Comfortably off: £200k-£499k in liquid assets; £3m-£4m in total assets

Comfortably wealthy: £500k-£999k in liquid assets; £5m-£15m in total assets

Lesser rich: £1m-£5m in liquid assets; £16m-£39m in total assets

Comfortably rich: £6m-£15m in liquid assets; £40m-£74m in total assets

Rich: £16m-£35m in liquid assets; £75m-£99m in total assets

Seriously rich: £36m-£49m in liquid assets; £100m-£199m in total assets

Truly rich: £50m-£100m in liquid assets; £200m-£399m in total assets

Filthy or super rich: Over £100m in liquid assets; over £1bn in total assets

Dennis also offers the following pearls of wisdom:

· If you stay too long working for others, you will never be rich

· If you have artistic inclinations (and fear the search for wealth will degrade them) you will never be rich.

· If you are not prepared to work longer hours than anyone you know, you will never be rich.

· Inner compulsion is mandatory in the getting of money

· You must choose between riches and seeking contentment

· Your body is a machine – a machine that requires sleep, good quality fuel, and the odd day off. Making time to sleep well, eat well, and take an occasional walk in the park is not slacking, not a betrayal of the cause. It’s just good sense. The getting of money is a marathon, not a sprint. Keeping mentally and physically fit is essential.

Related articles:

How to ace your banking interview in the style of a narcissist

When a million isn’t enough: why top bankers are struggling to get by

Eight methods for reinventing your financial services career 

Comments (28)

  1. Guess that means I’m uncomfortably poor. Where did it all go wrong?

  2. Sounds about right, despite my employment at a hedge fund I fall into the comfortably poor catagory. I live in an unfashionable provincial town rather than chelsea, my transport is a bicycle rather than a ferrari, and my favourite brand is Primark rather than Gucci.

  3. chances are if you are reading efinancial then you will most likely fall into the comfortably poor category. I myself do not consider myself worthy of that category.

  4. F Dennis is an idiot.

  5. dumb rating category.
    basically means the highest rating for 99% of britain is comfortably poor, with the vast majority far worse off

  6. The key point is “If you stay too long working for others, you will never be rich”

    You see it all the time on the trading floor. Heads of desk acting like big shots infront of the analysts because they’re pulling in 350k whilst their former colleagues who left to start up their own shops are making 3mill, but you’ll never hear about them, only the ones who didn’t make it or blew up. Much better to never try and never fail, be a cog in the machine, brick in the wall. Where’s that spread sheet…….

  7. Good on you Jol – at last someone who lives in the real world…..most of the ‘facts’ on here are dubious at best. It’s basically become a forum for people to pretend they earn more than they do….FACT

  8. I think he has hit the nail on the head!

    Although being trained in a bank, I’m sure other people have noticed that there is a black hole between Truly Rich and Super Rich – what about all those people with 399-1bn in total assets?? Is it like snakes and ladders where they fall back to being comfortably poor?

    Marathon not a sprint Reply
  9. JimBob: I take your remark as a insult. In fact, I work in the middle office of a midsized bank and have an annual base salary of GBP20 million…FACT

    Delusionalfinanceprofessional Reply
  10. Mackinag makes a great point

  11. F Dennis must take a trip to developing countries to see what poor means. What an idiot.

  12. This Felix Dennis chap sounds like a right noob, and not very bright at that.

    If Mr Noob is right, then why is it that since the 1950’s, GDP per person has increased, yet the population is no happier. Why are people who drive Ferrari’s more likely to commit suicide, than someone who drives a Vauxhall?

    Jol – :)

    JimBob – yes, too true

    Delusionalfinanceprof – how could you be offended by JimBob? And how can you have an annual income of 20 million, yet be reading this forum? Are you sure you took your medication this morning?

  13. I would like to add a few more catergories…uncomfortably poor, very uncomfortably poor, poor, very poor, poverty, below poverty, uncomfortable poverty…majority of people according to this survey would fall between very poor or below poverty…

  14. When you see such an a-hole how can you not become communist? 16m to be just confortable? On what planet does he live??

  15. Google the guy and take a look his photo, not surprising he has devoted his life to making money…. he doesn’t have much else going for him.

  16. Courrouçé:

    No he said 16m to be rich, only 50k to be comfortable. Let me explain: Comfortable means that there is food in the fridge, petrol in the car, and shoes on your feet. Rich means that you have no idea of the price of any of these things, nor do you care.

  17. djm

    according to him, if you have 15m you are not even rich. I know someone with an about 10m house and a Rolls Royce Phantom car, altogether it worth around 11m so he is not rich… But truth is, i can assure you he IS rich!

  18. He has a point. What is the risk-free rate at the moment, 4%, so 16M * 4% = 640K, i.e. a decent not outstanding IB compensation package.

  19. @iamMD – 160 before or after tax. Or perhaps you don’t pay tax ? If its after, then gross up and you are looking at 250+ which is good but not a common package

  20. @AliDesia

    Where do you get 160 from? 16M * 4% = 640K pa. Lets assume this is gross, so a decent package but nothing special and certainly not rich.

  21. Obviously ‘poor’ in Comfortably poor is not poor in the conventional sense. See djm’s comment

    @courrouçé 10m is not necessarily rich, it could also sit in the comfortably poor category. you proved the point in your comment,

    With his money, he can buy a nice place in London and a super car,

    but how about a Holiday home, luxury holidays, boat, private/first class travel, home maintenance costs. 10m won’t cover these expenses.

  22. @IamMD – I have no idea where the 160 came from. however, 640k net is about 1.1gross. this is quite a lot even for an MD

  23. I will never be rich working in risk mangement

  24. Wow it looks like I have to get a move on to be classed as rich, being a Trader just won’t cut it.

  25. Yes, but are they happy?

    True wealth is being able to fully experience life. It’s an abundance mindset, not a bank balance. There are alot of miserable billionaires on this planet; money just makes the misery a little more bearable!

  26. The author of this article is a delusional prat. An example of what is truly wrong with this world today.

    People of his ilk will be the first to go in the revolution, preferably by firing squad.

  27. Hopefully one day soon, the capitalist pigs will sit uncomfortably in prison.

  28. Tisk, Tisk, Now Dennis you forgot about the part that for every one million in liquid assets you have equates to one million people in Sub-Saharan Africa starving for a day

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