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Six years ago I wrote about the data on American Express premium cardmembers that we could get based on what they were sharing with advertisers. Platinum and Centurion cardmembers received Departures magazine, and they shared demographic and income data on these subscribers to promote advertising.
The data at the time lagged about 18 months, but suggested around 5,000 to 7,500 new cardmembers per month on average and that the vast majority lived in the most populous states of California, New York, Florida and Texas – and just 745 in North Dakota.
The single biggest card market was New York City (261,484) dwarfing the second biggest market Los Angeles (115,864) and the third largest market Miami (53,710). (Houston was 7th, Dallas Fort-Worth 11th.) The average household income at the time combined for Platinum and Centurion cardholders was reported to be $741,170.
There’s now new data making the rounds. A year ago American Express halted print publication of Departures moving online only.
- Platinum: average reported $474,000 income and $4.3 million net worth, 56 years old
- Centurion: average reported $1.8 million income and $11.4 million net work, 57 years old
Data for the median cardmember (err, Departures subscriber) would be more interesting than the mean which may be skewed by billionaires and hundred millionaires. In general I’ve found Platinum cards – which are charge cards – surprisingly easy for readers to get approved for with good but not perfect credit and without such high incomes.