status symbol

noun
an object, habit, etc., by which the social or economic status of the possessor may be judged.
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World English Dictionary
status symbol
 
n
a possession which is regarded as proof of the owner's social position, wealth, prestige, etc

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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American Heritage
Idioms & Phrases

status symbol

A position or activity that allows one's social prestige to be displayed, as in She doesn't even drive; that car of hers is purely a status symbol. [Mid-1900s]

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
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Example sentences
We view a car as a utilitarian thing and not a status symbol.
Originally, this special designated number was a desirable status symbol.
The quickest remedy, according to government talking heads, is to make toilets
  into a status symbol.
Within polygynous societies, multiple wives often become a status symbol
  denoting wealth and power.
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