No, this pie chart does not mean that anyone at CNBC believes the typical 25 year old earns a salary of $100k/y and spends $825/mo on rent

Tell me you didn’t click the link without telling me you didn’t click the link.

I don’t watch any TV news and CNBC plays no role in my life, but come on.

It’s easy to attack the messenger, but it’s really not that hard to Google “cnbc budget breakdown of a 25 year old” and click the first link. The chart, from a profile of a specific person who “brings in $100,000 a year tutoring people for the GMAT, GRE and LSAT,” presents that particular individual’s typical monthly expenses.

This post has gotten thousands of likes and generated hundreds of comments, many of them suggesting that CNBC is out of touch for reporting these figures as “typical.”

It’s easy to attack the messenger, but it’s really not hard to Google “cnbc budget breakdown of a 25 year old” and click the first link

This chart, from a profile of a specific person who “brings in $100,000 a year tutoring people for the GMAT, GRE and LSAT,” is not out-if-touch financial advice for the typical 25-year-old. 

Rather, this chart reports what one particular 25yo told CNBC about his typical monthly expenses.

Angry people online reacting as if this chart presents out-of-touch advice for how the average 25yo should budget their money. Perhaps title of the chart could use some tweaking, but in context of the article it makes perfect sense.

The reporter’s breakdown actually starts with that unusually low $825 rent figure, noting that this particular 25yo shares expenses with four roommates.

As usual, my meme is much more complex than the meme it’s combatting, because I have to include the original, my rebuttal and my reasoning.  

This situation is another example of how quick we are to join a crowd whose enthusiasm validates an opinion that we already hold.

In the past 24 or so hours, the thread I’ve been tracking has generated 2.5k reactions, 706 comments, and 678 shares.

On this Facebook thread, I responded to six or seven different posts, quoting or paraphrasing from the article and including a link. This is the only reaction I’ve gotten so far… a single like.

Thank you, Leslie.