A Week in Pittsburgh on a $60,000 Salary

Welcome to Spending Notes, where we do a weekly deep dive into how our readers spend their cash.

Today: a market research analyst who makes $60,000 a year

Occupation: market research analyst

Age: 36

Location: Pittsburgh, PA

Salary: $60,000 (approx. $1,800 per pay period)

Day One


I’ve been passionate about market research since my early college days and feel fortunate to have my job. I love working in a fast-paced environment and looking at data. Most of my work involves qualitative research to analyze consumer behavior. Some days, I get to talk to people, but most of the time, I’m sitting at my desk next to the rest of our team. We decided to go out for lunch today because this week is going to be a long one.

Total: $13

Day Two


My partner, D., and I have been considering a bathroom remodel. We have a really old tub and shower combo that came with the house. Needless to say, our bathroom is in need of some serious TLC. A few days ago, D. mentioned looking into one day shower remodeling, which is a concept that’s relatively new to me. I told D. I wanted a nice shower with better fixtures that actually regulate temperature properly. We found some promising options through Kohler Showers by Legacy Remodeling. They have years of experience in the bathroom remodeling industry, so we decided to contact them for a free quote.

Total: $0

Day Three


After work, I went home and started reading up on Matthew Gline, who is now the CEO of Roivant Sciences. It’s one of the healthcare technology companies that are focused on using technology to advance pharmaceutical development. The public health industry has always interested me. Matt Gline used to be CFO but is now the chief executive officer of the company that aims to create medicine faster. One example of how they might do this is by using data from a specific clinical study and building technology to develop better drug candidates. I ended up reading about drug discovery for hours.

Total: $0

Day Four


Today, I had to talk to clients and present some of my findings. As a market research analyst, I always find these days nerve-racking because you never know what a client will have to say about your work. I decided to treat myself to some ice cream after dinner. D. and I went to our favorite ice cream shop and added all of our favorite fixings. It was like a mini date, and I always appreciate any quality time we get to have together.

Total: $11.50

Day Five


Work today involved managing some budgets and working with the rest of the team to monitor some data collection. D. and I had dinner with my parents at a Russian Halal restaurant here in Pittsburgh. We paid for the meal, and they paid for dessert. We went to the same ice cream shop D. and I went to the night before. I have no regrets about having it two nights in a row.

Total: $53

Day Six


D. had a full day off, and I brought our dog, L., to the groomer. They do the full run-through of washing her fur and cutting her nails and hair. With L. gone, we do everything we can to clean up a little before her appointment is over. It’s the best time to vacuum the dog hair off of the couch because L. is afraid of the sound.

Total: $45

Day Seven


I decided to read over a couple of surveys for work. D. made dinner for both of us. We stayed in and didn’t do much else.

Total: $0

Total for the week: $122.50

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