I have been working on a graph to show how different US income data series compare to one another. I have plotted 8 income series from 4 different sources, including average and median income. Also, I used the CPI-U to adjust each series to 2005 dollars instead of 2002$, 2003$ and 2004$. Click on the graph to take a closer look:
Data sources for the income series can be found at:
- Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) GDP per Employed Person A good stand-in for worker productivity
- Congressional Budget Office (CBO) Average Household Includes non-cash income
- Census Average Family Income
- Census Average Household Income
- Census Median Family Income
- Census Median Household Income
- Saez Average Tax Units with cap gains (Excel file at Emmanuel Saez's web site)
- Saez Average Tax Units without cap gains (Excel file at Emmanuel Saez's web site)
Some of the differences in these series is due to the unit of measurement:
- Family is defined as two or more related people living together
- Households include families, singles, non-related people living together.
- Tax units are singles, married filling jointly, head of household.
Also over time, family and household sizes have been getting smaller.
If you see a problem with the graph you can post a comment. I plan to refine this graph over the next few weeks.
Addendum: 10/7/2006 Reformatted some of the labels and fixed the y-axis label