‘Looking for a man in finance’ isn’t all it’s cracked up to be, dating experts warn


In case you were wondering, the hottest song of the summer isn’t “Espresso” by Sabrina Carpenter nor the entirety of Charli XCX’s album, Brat. It’s actually a viral TikTok sound created by Megan Boni, which declares: “I’m looking for a man in finance with a trust fund, 6’5”, blue eyes.”

As Boni’s 19-second video racked up more than 40 million views (and counting), her viral song inspired thousands of others to confess that they were also looking for a partner who fit that particular bill. One woman commented under Boni’s TikTok: “Please add generational wealth somehow.” Another woman visited Canary Wharf in London with a cardboard sign that read: “Looking for a man in finance,” as she scouted potential dates in real-time. And a third user gate kept her actual finance boyfriend from the rest of the world. “Keep looking for your man ladies,” she said. “He’s out there.”

For the better half of the last decade, the term “finance bro” has become the ultimate red flag in dating – a pejorative phrase used by women to signal a (typically) white man who works for a major finance firm, works terrible hours, and has yet to shed some of their fraternity brother behavior well into adulthood. At the sight of a finance bro in the wild, young women would look the other way or pretend not to know the difference between Blackstone and BlackRock.

Now, it seems that all of a sudden – and with the help of Boni’s viral video – men in finance have become the number one most eligible bachelor. Surely, it can’t just be one catchy TikTok that has transformed finance bros from persona non grata to Prince Charming? Or are we just lying to ourselves by pretending that Patagonia vests are really that attractive?

When Sabrina Zohar – a professional dating coach and host of the Do The Work podcast – first saw Boni’s video pop up on her TikTok For You Page, she couldn’t help but shake her head at those who think this type of “ideal man” actually exists in the real world.

“I feel like this next generation is still holding on to this Disney fairytale that I’m going to have everything I want because I say I want it, and if I say I want it, then it should be there for me,” Zohar told The Independent.

As it turns out, there’s someone who actually did identify the probability of finding a man in finance with a trust fund who is 6’5” and has blue eyes – and the odds are pretty stacked against us. Rae Hodge, a Los Angeles-based corporate strategy director, posted her own video on TikTok in which she broke down (to her husband) an estimate for how many people in the US actually fit Boni’s description.

“6’5”, do you know how tall that is?” Hodge asked her husband Ryan, as she stood in front of a presentation with her findings. “It’s crazy tall.”

Factoring in Boni’s non-negotiables – works in finance (1.7 million men in the US), has a trust fund (1.2 percent of Americans), 6’5” (a staggering 0.1 percent of men in the US), and blue eyes (27 percent of men in the US) – and of course whether they’re single or not, that left Boni with only two men available to date across the entire country, according to Hodge’s calculations.

“Things aren’t looking good for GirlOnCouch,” commented one TikTok user in response.

Of course, there typically isn’t any rhyme or reason as to why videos go viral on the internet. It might very well be that we were bereft of a catchy viral song, and Boni’s was the earworm that stuck. For Sabrina Bendory – a relationship expert at Dating.com and author of You’re Overthinking It: Find Lifelong Love By Being Your True Self – it wasn’t just the comedic nature of Boni’s video that made it a viral sensation, but it also hit a particular nerve with Gen Z singles.

“This generation is pretty particular about things – they have a long list of requirements before they deem a product worthy of purchase or a job worthy of taking,” she told The Independent. “The same attitude carries over to dating and relationships, and this group is more inclined to openly post about their ‘ideal man’ or ‘perfect partner’ on social media.”

For decades, relationship experts told women that discussing money with a potential date or significant other was completely taboo. As women began making major strides in the labor market (though, a persistent gender wage gap will never make things equal), questions about money became less important once women were able to financially support themselves. That is, until Gen Z began romanticizing hyper-specific aesthetics on TikTok that, in turn, altered their perspectives on dating.

Trends like “clean girl aesthetic” and “quiet luxury” have been dominating TikTok feeds over the last two years, emphasizing understated elegance while avoiding obnoxious displays of wealth. Popular television shows like Succession have only piqued more interest into the lives of the super rich, while Sofia Richie’s wedding to husband Elliot Grainge transformed the nepotism baby into a stealth wealth style icon.

“There is just a lot of interest in the lifestyles of the super elite. It’s almost a form of escapism, especially given the current state of the economy, and it’s easy to be seduced by that lifestyle and imagining what it would be like to literally never have to worry about money, and for your kids to never worry about money, and their kids, and on and on,” said Bendory.

Not to mention there’s been an advent of young, “traditional motherhood” influencers – aka “trad-wives” – spending their days in the kitchen and cooking meals for their families from scratch. With such a constant influx of traditionalist and avaricious content online, no wonder our dating preferences have majorly changed as a result.

“The fact is, society as a whole thinks highly of men who make a lot of money. And a lot of people don’t think there is anything wrong with setting an intention to marry someone with money,” Bendory explained. “Financial strain is extremely difficult and you can’t fault someone for wanting to avoid that.”

Indeed, many reports have shown that Gen Z is facing financial hardships unlike any other generation. An estimated 38 percent of American adults born after 1996 have claimed they face more difficulty feeling financially secure than their parents did at the same age, according to a January 2024 Bankrate report. A survey from Bank of America found that more than half of Gen Zers believe higher costs are a barrier to their financial success. Between increasing housing costs and student loan payments, roughly two-thirds of Gen Zers think they’ll never have enough money to retire.

“I think we’re in a place now where we are seeing, generationally, that we cannot do what our parents did,” said Zohar. “We can’t be a single-income home with three kids while somebody stays home and takes care of everybody. Like, that ship has sailed. We’re barely able to provide for ourselves, let alone our family.”

With such uncertainty for young people in the economy, it should come as no surprise that some women believe marrying a man who works in finance with a trust fund could help them feel stable enough to accomplish their own long-term financial goals. But at what cost? If anything, the viral reaction to Boni’s video may have exposed just how much we’re willing to sacrifice in a relationship.

Financial stability has always played a factor in choosing a longtime partner, but there’s no arguing that compatibility, communication style, sexual chemistry, or a good sense of humor are far more important when it comes to relationships. What if he loses his job? Or the trust fund isn’t valuable anymore, or it won’t be accessible for another 20 years? Relationship experts agree that dating someone solely for their money can increase the chance of being unhappy in a relationship, and even increases the possibility of future divorce.

“We forget that there’s another flip side to the coin of having this perfect version of who you think that you want,” Zohar said. “If that’s what you want, then let me know the depth of your relationships. Let me know truly how fulfilled you feel, let me know how good you feel in this relationship.”

Looking for a man in finance with a trust fund who’s 6’5” and has blue eyes may be all fun and games when you’re not trying to take a relationship too seriously. However, when the time comes to fully weigh the pros and cons of being with a person, it’s ultimately more important to consider how you’ll achieve financial stability together – while also not sacrificing your own emotional fulfillment.

“In today’s economy, we’re seeing more people sacrifice genuine attraction, chemistry and compatibility to date someone with better personal finances,” said Bendory. “If you’re considering staying in a relationship for the sake of financial security, it’s important to think about the bigger picture of what will really fulfill you. Instead, I think we should normalize couples coming up with a financial plan together, and prioritizing things like value alignment, shared goals, and genuine friendship ahead of money.”





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