Welcome to Money Diaries, where we’re tackling what might be the last taboo facing modern working women: money. We’re asking women how they spend their hard-earned money during a seven-day period — and we’re tracking every last dollar.
Today: an Investment Banking Associate working in Financial Services who makes $150,000 per year and spends some of her money this week on Siggi’s yogurt.
Occupation: Investment Banking Associate
Industry: Financial Services
Location: New York, NY
Salary: $150,000 + an annual bonus equal to 50%-90% of salary
Paycheck Amount (2x/month): ~$3,500
Gender Identity: Female
Rent: $3,400 (I live by myself in a one-bedroom — it is a lot to pay in rent but I value my space and neighborhood highly)
Student Loans: $0 (lucky enough to have had full financial aid in college)
Gas/Fuel: $150 (not included in rent)
Rent The Runway: $159
Cell Phone: $110 (I am on my parents’ plan but Venmo them for my plan/phone installments every month)
Misfits Markets: $26 biweekly (fresh produce to your door — I LOVE this, what you get is always a surprise)
Spotify: $4 (family plan)
401(k): I contribute 8-10% of my paycheck each time and my company matches in full up to 5% (I have $60,000+ so far)
Savings: I keep all my savings in a high-interest account. I don’t save a set amount each month (sometimes it’s $500, sometimes it’s $3,000), but I try to save 90% of my annual bonuses so I have $115,000+ in there so far.
Credit: I use a credit card for all my purchases but never carry a balance. It’s more just for the points.
9 a.m. — My sister has been visiting and has to go back to college. I walk her to the subway and she wants to stop at Starbucks for her morning coffee. In classic fashion, she has no money on her debit card so I pay $6.26 for her coffee (I don’t drink coffee so I don’t get anything). Then, I walk her to the subway and scan her through ($2.75) with ApplePay. These subway payment systems are life-changing! $9.01
10 a.m. — I go home and make a quick breakfast of toast, scrambled eggs, mushrooms, and a greens salad. I have bread from a bakery in New Jersey, eggs from the farmer I source my meat and eggs from, and mushrooms/lettuce from my Misfits Markets box. I then clean my whole apartment since my best friend from college is visiting from SF and staying with me. After cleaning, I go to play pick up basketball at The Cage (I get absolutely destroyed) for a couple of hours.
2:30 p.m. — After basketball, I stop by my favorite cheese shop to get some cheese, charcuterie, crackers, and a baguette ($33.89) to celebrate my visiting friend getting into Ph.D. programs. I also grab a bottle of wine ($25.04) and a new diffuser for my bathroom ($32.12). It’s a relatively expensive outing, but it’s that post-basketball high I guess… $91.05
9 p.m. — My friend and I have a great time eating cheese/charcuterie/almonds and catching up on life. I have a birthday dinner to go to and she has plans with another friend, so we part ways for a few hours. The dinner is for my boyfriend, D.’s, good friend from high school so D. meets me at my apartment and we walk over. Dinner is so fun, with a fixed menu and lots of wine. We split the check and it comes out to $100 per person. We walk home and meet my college friend, F., back at my apartment. I give her my bed and D. and I sleep on the pull-out couch in the living room. $100
Daily Total: $200.06
7 a.m. — D. has to leave early so I say goodbye and then fall back asleep. F. and I wake up around 9 and get ready for the brunch plans we have with a college friend at 10:30. We walk to the restaurant and have a great time eating eggs, toast, drinking tea, and catching up on everything together. We split the bill three ways and it comes out to ~$27 a person. $27
1 p.m. — F. wants to have a day in Brooklyn so we wander around Manhattan for a while and then hop on the subway to Williamsburg ($2.75). We really want to see this one exhibit in Brooklyn so we make that our first stop. It is amazing (and free!) so we spend about two hours there. Despite it being the middle of winter, it feels like a spring day in Brooklyn so we go across the street, get drinks (I also get a piece of lavender shortbread because when in Brooklyn), and sit outside for an hour. After drinks and shortbread, we wander around Williamsburg for another couple of hours, stopping in book and art shops. I end up getting two pairs of socks ($3) and F. gets some books and a donut. $26.75
6:30 p.m. — We have a dinner reservation at 6:30 at one of my favorite places in Manhattan so we head back on the subway ($2.75). At dinner, we share three small appetizers and get our own mains, no wine or drinks (Sunday night after all). We split the bill — $51 each. Disclaimer: this week entails eating out more than I typically do because of all the visitors, etc… I tend to make a lot of my meals, but special occasions call for good restaurants! $53.75
Daily Total: $107.50
6:45 a.m. — I go to the gym for an hour before work. I walk to work after the gym. I usually take the subway to work, but given the 50-degree weather in February, I decide to make the ~45-minute trek to the office outside on foot. It’s a beautiful day. I always listen to music no matter what I’m doing — I am obsessed with it. I also dabble in music production and am currently writing my own songs, so I spend a lot of the walk thinking about that.
8:30 a.m. — I arrive at work on time. I always get breakfast at the cafeteria downstairs before going to my desk. Today I get a yogurt (Siggi’s) and berries. It should be a crime for this breakfast to cost over $6, but alas, New York. $6.26
12:30 p.m. — Again, because of the beautiful day, an old coworker and I make plans to walk the ~15 minutes to our favorite Australian coffee shop/cafe for quick salads. These salads are expensive, but they’re worth the splurge. I get a salad with kale, quinoa, squash, and grilled chicken. $16.88
5 p.m. — I have a relatively chill day at work today, so I have the energy to meet two friends at a pub across the street. They order beers and loaded fries/wings. I had grand plans to make a great dinner for myself at home, but I end up eating half the fries… oh well. They split the bill since I didn’t order anything so free dinner for me, I guess! I take the subway home.
7 p.m. — I open my mailbox to a very pleasant surprise of SURFER magazine’s latest issue (I’ve been expecting it to come since November and here we are in February…). I read that for a while, then I spend a couple of hours on Logic Pro X (Apple’s music production software) working on my latest song. I then send the song to my sisters for feedback. I FaceTime D., flip through the rest of SURFER, and go to bed around 10:30 in anticipation of my workout tomorrow morning! $2.75
Daily Total: $25.89
6:30 a.m. — I booked my favorite HIIT class on ClassPass last week (I like to book far ahead of time so I can structure my workouts) so I’m up at 6:30 and walking over by 7. This class makes me a little late to work, but it’s worth it. I hop on the subway after class. $2.75
12:30 p.m. — I get a quick salad downstairs at the cafeteria and head back up to the desk — today is busy with lots of calls and meetings! $10.68
6:30 p.m. — I go back home on the subway where D. meets me to make dinner and stay over. We have pork chops, roasted butternut squash from Misfits, and sauteed mushrooms. We both love to cook, so he makes the pork chops and I do the vegetables. We have a great conversation over dinner and then turn on the Democratic debate, argue back and forth for a while, agree on some things, fight about others, laugh about it, and go to bed. $2.75
Daily Total: $16.18
7:15 a.m. — I’m taking a day off from working out today. I get up and get ready then go to work via subway ($2.75). I treat myself to a breakfast wrap from the cafeteria instead of my usual yogurt ($5.49). $8.24
12:15 p.m. — I get lunch in the cafeteria because it’s taco day aka the best day of the week. Sadly, I don’t work at one of those tech companies that gives you free or heavily subsidized lunch so I have to pay for my food. It is definitely cheaper than ordering Sweetgreen or whatever else. I used to make lunch at work, but since switching teams, I haven’t gotten back in the habit. $10.29
3 p.m. — I buy two tickets to my favorite casual concert (Sofar Sounds) so I can take my sister. Sofar Sounds is basically “secret” concerts that happen all over the world in random venues (apartments, coffee shops, bars, etc.) and features three up and coming artists. You don’t find out the location until the day before and don’t know the artists until you show up. I’ve been to three and they’ve always been amazing. It’s a really fun activity for visitors/friends/dates. $40
7 p.m. — I take the subway downtown ($2.75) for another rare dining out experience during the week. D.’s best friend from high school is visiting so we made plans to go to our favorite restaurant with him and another high school friend. The four of us share an appetizer and each get our own dish. Great times are had and we split the bill four ways — it comes out to $33 each. We go home, hang out listening to music and chatting, and fall asleep. $35.75
Daily Total: $94.28
6 a.m. — I wake up and book a boxing class on ClassPass for this morning. I quickly get ready and then walk the twenty minutes to the boxing gym. I have my own gloves and multiple pairs of wraps, but I completely forget to bring both of them… So have to spend $10 buying a new pair of wraps. Sad. It is one of the better workouts I’ve had in a while even though I did my right hand wraps wrong and completely destroyed my knuckles!!! I take the subway to work afterward. $12.75
8:30 a.m. — Another breakfast of yogurt and fruit from the cafeteria! $5.46
12 p.m. — I order Sweetgreen salads for pick up with two work friends. It’s quick and easy since there’s one close to our office! $13.88
3 p.m. — I typically pride myself on how much money I save by not drinking coffee, but today I spend almost $3 on tea at Starbucks on a quick break with my coworker to catch up on our personal lives. I try not to buy tea unless I’m sitting down in a cafe because spending money on hot water feels very silly! Once in a while I cave and order one if I’m with someone. $2.72
5 p.m. — I take the subway to a doctor’s appointment I made two months ago (this woman is in HIGH demand apparently). She turns out to be 1000% worth the wait, she’s definitely my favorite doctor I’ve ever seen. I haven’t had a consistent physician since I was 13 years old so after some tongue lashing from my mother over the holidays, we decided it was time for me to find one in New York. I love this woman — she even pointed me to some YouTube videos re: “Yoga for Runners” and gave me book recommendations. Love it. $2.75
6:30 p.m. — I have a cocktail party back up at work for a women’s organization I am part of, so I have to go back to the office after my appointment. I hop back on the subway go to the party. I have my fill of finger food and conversations with various women at my company. I then go back to my desk for a bit to send a couple of emails and talk to my manager. We share a donut to celebrate her child due in a few weeks! $2.75
8 p.m. — I finally head back home for the evening. I FaceTime D., read a chapter of my book (Trust Exercise), and go to bed. $2.75
Daily Total: $43.06
7 a.m. — Back to the gym this morning — I do the StairMaster, some weights, and core. My workouts are usually quick when I’m not taking a class. I shower and take the subway to work. $2.75
9 a.m. — Another breakfast of yogurt, but no fruit this time! $3.16
11:45 a.m. — I am HUNGRY by 10:30. This is what happens when I just eat yogurt for breakfast… so I head with a coworker to get lunch early. I get a kale and fried chicken salad from the best fried chicken place near us (healthy but also not at all — kind of a perfect combination). He gets noodles from a different place. We head back to the office, sit at a table, and eat/chat for 45 minutes. Usually we all eat at our desks but on slower days we’ll make the effort to eat together and catch up. $14.14
7 p.m. — Back home on (you guessed it) the subway. Tonight I am making a typical dinner of roasted vegetables from my Misfits box — this week I have some fun stuff: romanesco, radishes, parsnips, zucchini, and squash. I sauté chard and mix it with grilled chicken for a healthy and filling meal. I read, call my mom, browse flights for a couple of upcoming trips, and play around on Logic for a while before bed. $2.75
Daily Total: $22.80
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