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Home Furnishings: Follow the Money | Income Groups

The top 20 percent of all households make over half (52.8 percent) of all income and pay 78.5 percent of all taxes. This still leaves these households who make over $105,600 per year with 48.6 percent of all disposable income.

This is the first factoid in a series of four factoids that details the annual mid-year Consumer Expenditure Survey report (mid 2015 to mid 2016) by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The report divides the 129 million households in the U.S. into 20 percent quintiles of around 25.8 million consumer units each from the lowest to highest earners. Not surprisingly, the majority of income earned before taxes along with the tax money generated and disposable income after taxes belong to households in the top quintile.

Over three-fourths (75.4 percent) of total income comes from the top two quintiles. The average income for the highest 20 percent is $192,051 before taxes and the second 20 percent of average $82,561. The remaining three income segments make up 60 percent of U.S. households and earn less than $63,800. They account for under a quarter (24.5 percent) of all household income.

The majority of tax dollars, 78.5 percent, comes from the top income segment (Table B). And although the highest earning households pay on average 20.6 percent of their income to taxes, their share of total U.S. income after taxes is still at 48.6 percent, down from 52.8 percent before taxes. Paying roughly 10 percent of income to taxes, the fourth 20 percent quintile has an average of $73,827 of income after taxes – maintaining 23.5 percent share of all disposable income. After taxes, the bottom three earning households bumped up to 28 percent of total disposable income but much of it will be swallowed by the essentials like food, shelter and healthcare. The next factoid will focus on characteristics of the income groups and how they spend money on essential items.  

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, Consumer Expenditure Survey, Mid-year Report 2015 to 2016

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FastFact: Top 20% Pay Most Taxes, Have Highest Disposable Income
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