Six in 10 Americans disagree with the famous phrase that money doesn't buy happiness. And, in fact, a recent survey shows the amount that guarantees it for respondents.
The price of happiness is $1.2 billion annually, a survey by financial services company Empower revealed.
"The first word that comes to people's minds when they think of financial happiness is freedom," the company said in a statement, explaining that 59% of 2,034 adults interviewed answered yes when asked if money bought happiness.
The percentage is even higher among younger generations: 72% for millennials (those born after 1980) and 67% for Gen Z.
Having more resources also gives a sense of security and relief, reported the company that authored the survey. "If financial happiness has a price, the average person thinks it's 1.2 million," he revealed.
Six in 10 Americans believe money does buy happiness, a survey has revealed. Courtney Hale/Getty Images
Although the median annual salary to be content is $284,167, according to the survey, the figure varies by generation. Millennials believe they need at least 525,000 to be happy. Men's estimate is also higher than women's, 381,000 versus 183,000, respectively.
Seventy-one percent of respondents felt that "having more money would solve most of their problems" and 71 percent admitted that they are currently experiencing financial stress.
"Economic pressures such as inflation (81 percent), rising costs (81 percent), interest rates (66 percent), and student loans (32 percent) are eroding people's sense of prosperity," the survey concluded.
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In addition to their debts, 36% of respondents acknowledged that they would not be able to handle an unforeseen expense of more than $500 without experiencing distress and a lot of worry.
Earning more money would also help them be healthier and improve creativity and innovation at work, respondents responded.
"Americans view work as transactional (75%) and, if money weren't an issue, two-thirds of Americans (64%) would quit their job tomorrow," according to the report.
Happiness is also achieved through financial flexibility and mental well-being: 62% of millennials acknowledged that they are "willing to spend $7 on a coffee a day for the joy it brings."
Seventy-three percent of respondents also said they would quit social media if it meant financial happiness.
In 2022, the median real household income in the United States was 74,580, according to the Census. It's only $209,587 short of being a little happier.