The term came about as an acronym for Young (Y) Urban (U) Professional (P) sometime in the early 1980's.
Yuppies tend to have at least Bachelors degrees (but more common, these days, graduate or professional degrees such as JD's and MBA's) and work in high paying professions such as Law, Accounting, Investment Banking, Engineering etc. Yuppies are known for their conspicous level of consumption and obsession with status symbols.
They tend to reside in urban environs such as Manhattan or San Francisco, but there are also suburban areas that are heavily populated with yuppies (such as Menlo Park/Palo Alto and Marin County, all in northern California).
Often times, Yuppies are "Big Hat, No Cattle" types who pay $2,000 a month to rent a swanky apartment and spend another $1,000 a month financing a luxury car, but at the end of the day have a negative networth because they are so in debt from their student loans and credit card bills.
For a perfect example of the yuppie lifestyle, watch the movie American Psycho.
Prospective Renter: Why are the rents here so high?
Landlord: Because the yuppies are willing to pay top dollar for the prestigous address and the fact that the building is right down the street from all the swanky restaurants, nightclubs, clothing boutiques and cafes.
September 18, 2006