Chart Detail

Sources of pretax comprehensive income, by income group, 2007 (2011 dollars)

Income fifth Breakdown of top 10%
Bottom Second Middle Fourth Top 90th–<95th percentile 95th–<99th percentile Top 1 percent Average all households
Households (millions) 24.6 22.2 22.9 23.0 23.7 6.0 4.7 1.2 116.88 (Total)
Share of total pretax income
Wages 50.5% 59.3% 60.5% 63.2% 48.4% 61.8% 55.6% 26.7% 54.3%
Proprietors’ income 6.0 2.6 1.9 1.6 2.6 2.8 4.8 1.6 2.4
Other business income 0.1 0.6 0.9 1.1 8.2 3.3 7.3 15.5 4.6
Interest and dividends 1.0 1.2 1.9 2.6 7.6 5.0 7.1 12.1 5.2
Capital gains 0.3 0.4 0.6 1.1 13.8 3.8 6.3 31.3 8.1
Pensions 1.9 4.1 7.1 8.2 5.2 7.6 5.9 1.1 5.8
Cash transfers 20.3 12.2 9.6 6.6 2.3 3.3 2.3 0.4 5.7
In-kind income 15.4 13.1 11.1 8.7 3.6 5.2 3.5 0.6 6.9
Imputed taxes 4.4 5.1 5.3 5.7 7.3 6.5 6.0 9.5 6.5
Other income 0.2 1.4 1.2 1.2 1.2 1.2 1.0 1.3 0.6
Total 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0 100.0
Average
Wages $10,082 $27,346 $42,341 $64,528 $139,009 $121,552 $174,477 $542,615 $56,561
Proprietors’ income 1,198 1,199 1,330 1,634 7,467 5,511 15,008 32,516 2,500
Other business income 20 277 630 1,123 23,551 6,580 22,803 315,001 4,792
Interest and dividends 200 553 1,330 2,655 21,828 9,890 22,130 245,904 5,416
Capital gains 60 184 420 1,123 39,635 7,451 19,908 636,099 8,437
Pensions 379 1,891 4,969 8,372 14,935 15,047 18,435 22,355 6,041
Cash transfers 4,053 5,626 6,719 6,739 6,606 6,410 7,082 8,129 5,937
In-kind income $3,075 $6,041 $7,768 $8,883 $10,339 $10,138 $11,039 $12,194 $7,187
Imputed taxes 878 2,352 3,709 5,820 20,966 12,745 18,971 193,065 6,771
Other income 40 646 840 1,225 3,446 2,362 3,245 26,419 625
Total 19,965 46,114 69,985 102,102 287,208 196,838 313,616 2,032,265 104,163
Shares of total income categories claimed by each group
Wages 3.8% 9.2% 14.7% 22.5% 49.9% 11.0% 12.4% 9.9% 100.0%
Proprietors’ income 9.8 8.8 10.1 12.5 58.8 11.0 23.4 13.0 100.0
Other business income 0.1 1.0 2.4 4.3 92.3 6.5 17.7 62.5 100.0
Interest and dividends 0.8 2.0 4.9 9.8 82.6 9.5 16.6 47.1 100.0
Capital gains 0.2 0.4 1.0 2.6 95.8 4.6 9.5 77.9 100.0
Pensions 1.3 5.9 16.0 27.1 49.7 12.7 12.2 3.8 100.0
Cash transfers 14.4 18.1 22.3 22.5 22.7 5.6 4.8 1.4 100.0
In-kind income 9.0 16.0 21.3 24.4 29.3 7.3 6.2 1.7 100.0
Imputed taxes 2.7 6.6 10.8 17.0 62.9 9.7 11.3 29.3 100.0
Other income 0.7 9.9 13.3 19.5 56.6 9.8 10.6 22.0 100.0
Average 4.0 8.3 13.1 19.1 55.5 9.6 12.0 19.9 100.0

Source: Authors' analysis of Congressional Budget Office (2010)

Updated May 20, 2012

Documentation and methodology

Underlying data are from the Congressional Budget Office, Average Federal Taxes by Income Group, “Sources of Income for All Households, by Household Income Category, 1979 to 2007” [Excel spreadsheet]. Shares of pretax income, by income source, are given by CBO for the bottom, second, middle, fourth, and top fifth, and the top 10, 5, and 1 percent. Average pretax income is defined as the sum of each income groups’ wages, proprietors’ income, other business income, interest and dividends, capital gains pensions, cash transfers, in-kind income, imputed taxes, and other income. For the purposes of this chapter, capital income is defined as the sum of capital gains, interest and dividends, and other business income categories. Sources of income for the groups are calculated by multiplying the shares of each income source by average pretax income. To calculate average pretax income by source for the 95th–< 99th percentile, the aggregate incomes of the top 5 percent were subtracted from the aggregate incomes of the top 10 percent and divided by the total number of households in the 95th–<99th percentile. Aggregate income is calculated by multiplying the number of households in each income group by average pretax income source. The number of households is calculated by subtracting the number of households in the top 5 percent from the number of households in the top 10 percent. The same calculation is done for the 95th–<99th percentile using the top 5 percent and the top 1 percent. The share of total income categories claimed by each group is calculated by dividing the aggregate income for each income source in each income group by the total aggregate income for all households, minus negative income. Data are inflated to 2011 dollars using the CPI-U-RS.

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