Status Symbol

AAA

DEFINITION of 'Status Symbol'

A status symbol is an object which is meant to signify its owners' high social and economic standing. Although which things act as status symbols changes over time, they are always linked to the primary differences between the upper and lower classes within the society. In capitalist societies, status symbols are most often tied to monetary wealth.

INVESTOPEDIA EXPLAINS 'Status Symbol'

Expensive goods like luxury vehicles and large houses are mostly out of reach for lower economic classes, so these items serve as status symbols indicating that their owners are able to afford their extremely high prices. Since much of the utility derived from status symbols comes from their high price, an increased price for a status symbol may actually increase its demand, rather than diminish it. A product which exhibits this phenomenon is known as a Veblen good.

RELATED TERMS
  1. Luxury Item

    An item that is not necessary for living, but is deemed as highly-desired ...
  2. Luxury Automobile Limitations

    An annual limit on the amount of depreciation that can be taken ...
  3. Income Elasticity Of Demand

    A measure of the relationship between a change in the quantity ...
  4. Luxury Tax

    A tax placed on products or services that are deemed to be unnecessary ...
  5. McMansion

    A slang term that describes a large, opulent house that may be ...
  6. Zero Percent

    A promotional rate of interest used to entice consumers, often ...
Related Articles
  1. Budgeting

    Stop Keeping Up With The Joneses - They're Broke

    Conspicuous consumption could be robbing you of future wealth.
  2. Options & Futures

    Budget Without Blowing Off Your Friends

    With a little planning, you can maintain your social life without breaking the bank.
  3. Retirement

    Two Roads: Debt Or Financial Independence?

    A higher income won't make you richer - unless you learn to live on less.
  4. Credit & Loans

    The Disposable Society: An Expensive Place To Live

    Resisting the trend toward consumption will boost your bottom line and bolster the environment.
  5. Mutual Funds & ETFs

    Investing In Leisure Funds

    If you thought investing and fun don't go together, think again. Find out more here.
  6. Options & Futures

    Profiting From A Consumerless Recovery

    Recovering from an economic slump isn't the easiest thing to do, but here are a few potential methods of rebuilding.
  7. Budgeting

    Downshift To Simplify Your Life

    Learn how to ditch the rat race with voluntary simple living.
  8. Chart Advisor

    Profit From Holiday Spending With This ETF

    As Americans finish purchasing the last of their holiday gifts, the consumer discretionary sector will continue to be one of the primary beneficiaries.
  9. Budgeting

    What are the pros and cons of digital gift cards (e-gift cards)?

    Examine the pros and cons of gift cards. Learn about protection in case of loss, monitoring spending by teens and wasted small balances.
  10. Savings

    What causes negative inflation or deflation?

    Find out what deflation is, what causes it, how it hurts the economy and how it can lead to a worsening cycle of deflation that is hard to break.

You May Also Like

Hot Definitions
  1. Christmas Tree

    An options trading strategy that is generally achieved by purchasing one call option and selling two other call options at ...
  2. Christmas Club

    A short-term savings account that usually pays out the full account balance to its account holders once each year, right ...
  3. Boston Snow Indicator

    A market theory that states that a white Christmas in Boston will result in rising stock prices for the following year. For ...
  4. Christmas Island Dollar

    The former currency of Christmas Island, an Australian island in the Indian Ocean that was discovered on December 25, 1643. ...
  5. Santa Claus Rally

    A surge in the price of stocks that often occurs in the week between Christmas and New Year's Day. There are numerous explanations ...
  6. Commodity

    1. A basic good used in commerce that is interchangeable with other commodities of the same type. Commodities are most often ...
Trading Center