Who makes it to the top? We use the leading, socio-economic survey in Germany supplemented by extensive data on the rich to answer this question. We identify the key predictors for belonging to the top 1 percent of income, wealth, and both distributions jointly. Although we consider many, only a few traits matter: Entrepreneurship and self-employment in conjunction with a sizable inheritance of company assets is the most important covariate combination across all rich groups. Our data suggest that all top 1 percent groups, but especially the joint top 1 percent, are predominantly populated by intergenerational entrepreneurs.
Keywords: Top wealth, top income, intergenerational transfers, rich-group classification modelling, predictions