Masters tickets tank along with disposable income

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Consumer spending is down, and high net worth types are dealing with lower bonuses, falling home equity and tanking stock portfolios.

The result? Less demand for tickets to The Masters, one of the most prestigious golf tournaments in the world. Citing data from StubHub, the Wall Street Journalreports (subscription required) that the average price for a Friday Master's badge was $612, down 43% from a year ago.

Interestingly, Major League Baseball ticket prices are not down nearly as much, and while demand is soft, creative promotions are helping teams attract fans.

What gives? The recession has in some ways been a lot harder on rich people than it has been on the middle-class: Asset prices are in free-fall and people whose incomes are more weighted toward investments than salaries are especially vulnerable: That has many wealthy golf fans less willing to fork over $1,000 or more for tickets to the Masters.

Of course, no one's going to have too much sympathy for investment bankers who are feeling too poor to buy tickets to the Masters.
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