It looks like the economic recession is officially over in the United States. Let’s check some key financial indicators. The Dow Jones Average is over 15,750, an all-time high, and the median household income is over $51,000.
In other economic news, the PGA Championship and the Players Championship have announced they will offer purses totaling $10 million in fiscal 2014, according to PGA.com.
It seems the rich are going to get just a bit richer next year.
In an unprecedented move, the PGA of America and the PGA Tour, two organizations that very seldom agree on anything, have agreed to combine efforts and support some joint initiatives. One of which is raising the total purses for their premier golf tournaments.
The Players Championship, which is owned and operated solely by the PGA Tour, previously offered the largest purse in golf at $9.5 million. It will increase by $500,000 to $10 million in 2014.
PGA of America President Ted Bishop announced that the fourth major tournament of the year, the PGA Championship, would match the Players Championship’s $10 million purse next year.
The 2013 Masters Tournament, U.S. Open and the PGA Championship purses each totaled $8 million, with $1.44 million going to winners Adam Scott, Justin Rose and Jason Dufner, respectively. Phil Mickelson took home $1.443 million and the Claret Jug for his win in the Open Championship last year.
Adam, Justin, Phil and Jason are probably sorry they won in 2013. The winner’s share of a $10 million purse would have been $1.8 million.
You know what they say—a million here and a million there, pretty soon you are talking about real money.
The four World Golf Championship events—WGC-Accenture Match Play, WGC-Cadillac Championship, WGC-Bridgestone Invitational and WGC-HSBC Champions—have offered over $8.5 million and have been some of the larger purses on tour in the past.
The addition of the six PGA Tour events in the new 2013-2014 wrap-around schedule has added another $7-8 million to the total amount of prize money available on tour for next year.
Including the six events from the fall of 2013, 28 regular tour events next year, four majors, four WGC events, four FedEx Cup playoff tournaments and the Players Championship, the total prize money available on the PGA Tour will add up somewhere north of $300 million. Throw in another $35 million of FedEx Cup bonus-pool dollars, and the total is very close to $340 million.
To make the top 125 and be eligible for the 2013 FedEx Cup playoffs requires earnings of $610,000. Tiger Woods topped the 2013 PGA Tour money list with $8.55 million.
With the six extra events and increased purse sizes in 2014, a player will need to set a goal of $1 million in earnings to win a spot in the 2014 FedEx Cup playoffs. The leading money winner (probably Tiger Woods) will win over $10 million.
Back when he was winning most of the majors, Woods won over $10 million in a season on three different occasions.
The best Europeans have already bailed on the European Tour and moved to the U.S. to play for the big bucks. With the PGA Tour expanding globally into South America, Canada and now China, the best golfers in the world will continue to compete for spots on the big tour.
These guys are good, and they are going to get even better.
Plus just a little bit richer.