Jay-Z: Patron Saint of Generational Wealth and Financial Literacy

Jay-Z famously rapped, “I can’t help the poor if I’m one of them, so I got rich and gave back, to me that’s the win/win” which set him up as an excellent financial role model. Everyday people can learn some money lessons from the man who gave us Big Pimpin’.


You wanna know what’s more important than throwin’ away money at a strip club? Credit

You ever wonder why Jewish people own all the property in America? This how they did it

Financial freedom my only hope

F*ck livin’ rich and dyin’ broke

“The Story of OJ” from 4:44 (album)

Educational Lesson from Jay-Z:

Create a budget and stick with it. A budget helps stop overspending today, like Jay mentions.  Misuse of today’s money, usually prevents people from achieving tomorrow’s financial goals. It’s unfortunate that many people seem to believe that a budget would be restrictive.  However, a properly planned budget will allow for monthly bills to be paid timely, credit cards to be paid off systemically, better planning for rising costs of goods and services, and being able to plan for a rainy day. Plus, entertainment and fun can certainly be built into each budget to avoid FOMO!


I bought every V12 engine

Wish I could take it back to the beginnin’

I coulda bought a place in Dumbo before it was Dumbo

For like two million

That same building today is worth twenty-five million

Guess how I’m feelin’? Dumbo

“The Story of OJ” from 4:44 (album)

Educational Lesson from Jay-Z:

Consider investing in assets that will appreciate (like real estate), unlike assets that depreciate (such as cars). Some cars lose about 60% of their value right as they’re driven off the lot. Even Jay-Z regrets buying depreciating assets! Getting caught up in consumerism is tempting because anytime you open Instagram, or glance at social media, you will find relentless consumption. Jay’s lesson here would be that it hurts your future to buy things that you can’t afford in order to show them off today. Just look at this influencer who was working an unpaid internship and racked up $10,000 of debt. It’s seductive to want people to think that you’re living a glamorous life, but building generational wealth is more important. At least that’s the educational take-away Jay-Z wants us to understand! 


Generational wealth, that’s the key. My parents ain’t have [stuff] so that shift started with me. “Legacy”, 4:44 (album)

Educational Lesson from Jay-Z:

Start planning your financial future today. Better yet, start thinking about the legacy you’d like to leave for your kids. Jay appears to regret that legacy became important to him much later in life, leaving many generational wealth building opportunities on the table. Changing your mindset to one that’s focused on the future instead of today allows people to consider their priorities, goals and dreams. Knowing what those goals are makes achieving them more realistic. How do you devour a whale? One bite at a time.

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