Business: America's New Elite

A big-spending market is born: two-career couples

Gayle and Chip Swett, both 35, live well by any standard. Chip earns about $35,000 a year as a stockbroker, while Gayle designs and produces shower curtains; this year she hopes to sell $75,000 worth. They paid $80,000 last year for their five-bedroom colonial house in Sherborn, Mass, and recently filled up the place with everything from expensive wicker furniture to a large freezer. They have bought a country-club membership ($2,000 a year), two cars, two TVs and a long list of high-priced appliances. Says Gayle: "All...

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