Household income in the United States
Household income is an economic measure that can be applied to one household, or aggregated across a large group such as a county, state, or whole country. It is used by the United States government and private institutions to describe the amount of money coming into households and to track economic trends in the US. One key measure is the "real median" level, meaning half of households have income above that level and half below, while "real" annotates that the monetary amounts have been adjusted for inflation. According to the Census, real median household income was $61,372 in 2017, an increase of $1,063 or 1.8% versus 2016, the second consecutive record level year. This measure was $60,309 in 2016 and $58,476 in 2015. A household's income can be calculated in various ways, but the US Census as of 2009 measured it in the following manner: the income of every resident of that house, over the age of 15, including wages and salaries, as well as any kind of governmental entitlement such as unemployment insurance, disability payments or child support payments received, along with any personal business, investment, or other recurring sources of income.
The residents of the household do not have to be related to the head of the household for their earnings to be considered part of the household's income. As households tend to share a similar economic context, the use of household income remains among the most accepted measures of income; that the size of a household is not taken into account in such measures may distort any analysis of fluctuations within or among the household income categories, may render direct comparisons between quintiles difficult or impossible. The U. S. Census Bureau reported that real median household income was $61,372 in 2017, exceeding any previous year; as indicated by the charts below, household income has increased since the late 1970s and early 80s in real terms due to higher individual median wages, due to increased opportunities for women. Changes in median income reflect several trends: the aging of the population, changing patterns in work and schooling, the evolving makeup of the American family, as well as long- and short-term trends in the economy itself.
For instance, the retirement of the Baby Boom generation should push down overall median income, as more persons enter lower-income retirement. However, analysis of different working age groups indicate a similar pattern of stagnating median income as well. Another line of analysis, known as "total compensation," presents a more complete picture than real wages; the Kaiser Family Foundation conducted a study in 2013 which shows that employer contributions to employee healthcare costs went up 78% from 2003 to 2013. The marketplace has made a trade-off: expanding benefits packages vs. increasing wages. According to the CBO, between 1979 and 2011, gross median household income, adjusted for inflation, rose from $59,400 to $75,200, or 26.5%. However, once adjusted for household size and looking at taxes from an after-tax perspective, real median household income grew 46%, representing significant growth. Use of individual household income: The government and organizations may look at one particular household's income to decide if a person is eligible for certain programs, such as nutrition assistance or need-based financial aid, among many others.
Use at the aggregate level: Summaries of household incomes across groups of people - the entire country - are studied as part of economic trends like standard of living and distribution of income and wealth. Household income as an economic measure can be represented as a median, a mean, a distribution, other ways. Household income can be studied across time, education level, race/ethnicity, many other dimensions; as an indicator of economic trends, it may be studied along with related economic measures such as disposable income, household net worth and employment statistics. Median inflation-adjusted household income increases and decreases with the business cycle, declining in each year during the periods 1979 through 1983, 1990 through 1993, 2000 through 2004 and 2008 through 2012, while rising in each of the intervening years. Extreme poverty in the United States, meaning households living on less than $2 per person per day before government benefits, more than doubled from 636,000 to 1.46 million households between 1996 and 2011, with most of this increase occurring between late 2008 and early 2011.
The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office conducted a study analyzing household income throughout the income distribution, by combining the Census and IRS income data sources. Unlike the Census measure of household income, the CBO showed income before and after taxes, by taking into account household size; the CBO definition of income is much broader, includes in kind transfers as well as all monetary transfers from the government. The Census' official definition of money income excludes food stamps and the EITC, for example, while CBO includes it. Between 1979 and 2011, gross median household income, adjusted for inflation, rose from $59,400 to $75,200, or 26.5%. This compares with the Census' growth of 10%. However, once adjusted for household size and looking at taxes from an after-tax perspective, real median household income grew 46%, representing significant growth. Another common measurement of personal income is the mean household income. Unlike the median household income, which divides all households in two halves, the mean income is the average income earned by American households.
In the case of mean inc
Personal income in the United States
Personal income is an individual's total earnings from wages, investment interest, other sources. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported a median personal income of $865 weekly for all full-time workers in 2017; the U. S Bureau of the Census has the annual median personal income at $31,099 in 2016. Inflation-adjusted per-capita disposable personal income rose in the U. S. from 1945 to 2008, but has since remained level. Income patterns are evident on the basis of age, sex and educational characteristics. In 2005 half of all those with graduate degrees were among the nation's top 15% of income earners. Among different demographics for those over the age of 18, median personal income ranged from $3,317 for an unemployed, married Asian American female to $55,935 for a full-time, year-round employed Asian American male. According to the US Census, men tended to have higher income than women, while Asians and Whites earned more than African Americans and Hispanics. In the United States the most cited personal income statistics are the Bureau of Economic Analysis's personal income and the Census Bureau's per capita money income.
The two statistics spring from different traditions of measurement—personal income from national economic accounts and money income from household surveys. BEA's statistics relate personal income to measures of production, including GDP, is considered an indicator of consumer spending; the Census Bureau's statistics provide detail on income distribution and demographics and are used to produce the nation's official poverty statistics. BEA's personal income measures the income received by persons from participation in production, from government and business transfers, from holding interest-bearing securities and corporate stocks. Personal income includes income received by nonprofit institutions serving households, by private non-insured welfare funds, by private trust funds. BEA publishes disposable personal income, which measures the income available to households after paying federal and state and local government income taxes. Income from production is generated both by the labor of individuals and by the capital that they own.
Income, not earned from production in the current period—such as capital gains, which relate to changes in the price of assets over time—is excluded. BEA's monthly personal income estimates are one of several key macroeconomic indicators that the National Bureau of Economic Research considers when dating the business cycle. Personal income and disposable personal income are provided both as aggregate and as per capita statistics. BEA produces monthly estimates of personal income for the nation, quarterly estimates of state personal income, annual estimates of local-area personal income. More information is found on BEA's website; the Census Bureau collects income data on several major surveys, including the Annual Social and Economic Supplement of the Current Population Survey, the Survey of Income and Program Participation, the American Community Survey. The CPS is the source of the official national estimates of poverty and the most cited source of annual household income estimates for the United States.
The CPS measure of money income is defined as the total pre-tax cash income received by people on a regular basis, excluding certain lump-sum payments and excluding capital gains. The Census Bureau produces alternative estimates of income and poverty based on broadened definitions of income that include many of these income components that are not included in money income; the Census Bureau releases estimates of household money income as medians, percent distributions by income categories, on a per capita basis. Estimates are available by demographic characteristics of householders and by the composition of households. More details on income concepts and sources are found on the Census Bureau's website. Of those individuals with income who were older than 15 years of age 50% had incomes below $30,000 while the top 10% had incomes exceeding $95,000 a year in 2015; the distribution of income among individuals differs from household incomes as 39% of all households had two or more income earners.
As a result, 25% of households have incomes above $100,000 though only 9.2% of Americans had incomes exceeding $100,000 in 2010. As a reference point, the US minimum wage since 2009 has been $7.25 per hour or $15,080 for the 2080 hours in a typical work year. The minimum wage is 25% over the official U. S. government-designated poverty income level for a single person unit and about 63% of the designated poverty level for a family of four, assuming only one worker.. Annual wages of $30,160. SOURCE: US Census Bureau, Current Population Survey 2016 This chart is median income of 15 year olds or older, who have non-zero income. Amounts are shown in real dollars. Personal income varied with an individual's racial characteristics with racial discrepancies having remained stagnant since 1996. Overall, Asian Americans earned higher median personal incomes than any other racial demographic. Asian Americans had a median income ten percent higher than that of Whites; the only exception was among the holders of graduate degrees.
Among those with a master's, professional or doctorate degree, those who identified as White had the highest median indi
Higher education is an optional final stage of formal learning that occurs after completion of secondary education. Delivered at universities, colleges, seminaries and institutes of technology, higher education is available through certain college-level institutions, including vocational schools, trade schools, other career colleges that award academic degrees or professional certifications. Tertiary education at non-degree level is sometimes referred to as further education or continuing education as distinct from higher education; the right of access to higher education is mentioned in a number of international human rights instruments. The UN International Covenant on Economic and Cultural Rights of 1966 declares, in Article 13, that "higher education shall be made accessible to all, on the basis of capacity, by every appropriate means, in particular by the progressive introduction of free education". In Europe, Article 2 of the First Protocol to the European Convention on Human Rights, adopted in 1950, obliges all signatory parties to guarantee the right to education.
In the days when few pupils progressed beyond primary education or basic education, the term "higher education" was used to refer to secondary education, which can create some confusion. This is the origin of the term high school for various schools for children between the ages of 14 and 18 or 11 and 18. Higher education includes teaching, exacting applied work, social services activities of universities. Within the realm of teaching, it includes both the undergraduate level, beyond that, graduate-level; the latter level of education is referred to as graduate school in North America. In addition to the skills that are specific to any particular degree, potential employers in any profession are looking for evidence of critical thinking and analytical reasoning skills, teamworking skills, information literacy, ethical judgment, decision-making skills, fluency in speaking and writing, problem solving skills, a wide knowledge of liberal arts and sciences. Since World War II, developed and many developing countries have increased the participation of the age group who studies higher education from the elite rate, of up to 15 per cent, to the mass rate of 16 to 50 per cent.
In many developed countries, participation in higher education has continued to increase towards universal or, what Trow called, open access, where over half of the relevant age group participate in higher education. Higher education is important to national economies, both as an industry, in its own right, as a source of trained and educated personnel for the rest of the economy. College educated workers have commanded a measurable wage premium and are much less to become unemployed than less educated workers. However, the admission of so many students of only average ability to higher education requires a decline in academic standards, facilitated by grade inflation; the supply of graduates in many fields of study is exceeding the demand for their skills, which aggravates graduate unemployment, underemployment and educational inflation. The U. S. system of higher education was influenced by the Humboldtian model of higher education. Wilhelm von Humboldt's educational model goes beyond vocational training.
In a letter to the Prussian king, he wrote: There are undeniably certain kinds of knowledge that must be of a general nature and, more a certain cultivation of the mind and character that nobody can afford to be without. People cannot be good craftworkers, soldiers or businessmen unless, regardless of their occupation, they are good, upstanding and – according to their condition – well-informed human beings and citizens. If this basis is laid through schooling, vocational skills are acquired on, a person is always free to move from one occupation to another, as so happens in life; the philosopher Julian Nida-Rümelin criticized discrepancies between Humboldt's ideals and the contemporary European education policy, which narrowly understands education as a preparation for the labor market, argued that we need to decide between McKinsey and Humboldt. Demonstrated ability in reading and writing, as measured in the United States by the SAT or similar tests such as the ACT, have replaced colleges' individual entrance exams, is required for admission to higher education.
There is some question as to whether advanced mathematical skills or talent are in fact necessary for fields such as history, philosophy, or art. The general higher education and training that takes place in a university, college, or Institute of technology includes significant theoretical and abstract elements, as well as applied aspects. In contrast, the vocational higher education and training that takes place at vocational universities and schools concentrates on practical applications, with little theory. In addition, professional-level education is always included within Higher Education, in graduate schools since many postgraduate academic disciplines are both vocationally and theoretically/research oriented, such as in the law, pharmacy and veterinary medicine. A basic requirement for entry into these graduate-level programs is always a bachelor's degree, although alternative means of obtaining entry into such programs may be available at some universiti
A graduate school is a school that awards advanced academic degrees with the general requirement that students must have earned a previous undergraduate degree with a high grade point average. A distinction is made between graduate schools and professional schools, which offer specialized advanced degrees in professional fields such as medicine, business, speech-language pathology, or law; the distinction between graduate schools and professional schools is not absolute, as various professional schools offer graduate degrees and vice versa. Many universities award graduate degrees. While the term "graduate school" is typical in the United States and used elsewhere, "postgraduate education" is used in English-speaking countries to refer to the spectrum of education beyond a bachelor's degree; those attending graduate schools are called "graduate students", or in British English as "postgraduate students" and, colloquially, "postgraduates" and "postgrads". Degrees awarded to graduate students include master's degrees, doctoral degrees, other postgraduate qualifications such as graduate certificates and professional degrees.
Producing original research is a significant component of graduate studies in the humanities, natural sciences and social sciences. This research leads to the writing and defense of a thesis or dissertation. In graduate programs that are oriented towards professional training, the degrees may consist of coursework, without an original research or thesis component; the term "graduate school" is North American. Additionally, in North America, the term does not refer to medical school, only refers to law school or business school. Graduate students in the humanities and social sciences receive funding from the school and/or a teaching assistant position or other job. Although graduate school programs are distinct from undergraduate degree programs, graduate instruction is offered by some of the same senior academic staff and departments who teach undergraduate courses. Unlike in undergraduate programs, however, it is less common for graduate students to take coursework outside their specific field of study at graduate or graduate entry level.
At the Ph. D. level, though, it is quite common to take courses from a wider range of study, for which some fixed portion of coursework, sometimes known as a residency, is required to be taken from outside the department and college of the degree-seeking candidate, to broaden the research abilities of the student. Some institutions denote other divisions. Graduate degrees in Brazil are called "postgraduate" degrees, can be taken only after an undergraduate education has been concluded". Lato sensu graduate degrees: degrees that represent a specialization in a certain area, take from 1 to 2 years to complete. Sometimes it can be used to describe a specialization level between a master's degree and a MBA. In that sense, the main difference is that the Lato Sensu courses tend to go deeper into the scientific aspects of the study field, while MBA programs tend to be more focused on the practical and professional aspects, being used more to Business and Administration areas. However, since there are no norms to regulate this, both names are used indiscriminately most of the time.
Stricto sensu graduate degrees: degrees for those who wish to pursue an academic career. Masters: 2 years for completion. Serves as additional qualification for those seeking a differential on the job market, or for those who want to pursue a PhD. Most doctoral programs in Brazil require a master's degree, meaning that a Lato Sensu Degree is insufficient to start a doctoral program. Doctors / PhD: 3–4 years for completion. Used as a stepping stone for academic life. In Canada, the Schools and Faculties of Graduate Studies are represented by the Canadian Association of Graduate Studies or Association canadienne pour les études supérieures; the Association brings together 58 Canadian universities with graduate programs, two national graduate student associations, the three federal research-granting agencies and organizations having an interest in graduate studies. Its mandate is to promote and foster excellence in graduate education and university research in Canada. In addition to an annual conference, the association prepares briefs on issues related to graduate studies including supervision and professional development.
Admission to a master's program requires a bachelor's degree in a related field, with sufficiently high grades ranging from B+ and higher, recommendations from professors. Some schools require samples of the student's writing as well as a research proposal. At English-speaking universities, applicants from countries where English is not the primary language are requir
Education in the United States
Education in the United States is provided in public and home schools. State governments set overall educational standards mandate standardized tests for K–12 public school systems and supervise through a board of regents, state colleges, universities. Funding comes from the state and federal government. Private schools are free to determine their own curriculum and staffing policies, with voluntary accreditation available through independent regional accreditation authorities, although some state regulation can apply. In 2013, about 87% of school-age children attended state funded public schools, about 10% attended tuition- and foundation-funded private schools, 3% were home-schooled. By state law, education is compulsory over an age range starting between five and eight and ending somewhere between ages sixteen and eighteen, depending on the state; this requirement can be satisfied in public schools, state-certified private schools, or an approved home school program. In most schools, compulsory education is divided into three levels: elementary school, middle or junior high school, high school.
Children are divided by age groups into grades, ranging from kindergarten and first grade for the youngest children, up to twelfth grade as the final year of high school. There are a large number and wide variety of publicly and administered institutions of higher education throughout the country. Post-secondary education, divided into college, as the first tertiary degree, graduate school, is described in a separate section below. Higher education includes elite private colleges like Harvard University, Stanford University, MIT, Caltech, large state flagship universities, private liberal arts schools, historically-black colleges and universities, community colleges, for-profit colleges like University of Phoenix. College enrollment rates in the United States have increased over the long term. At the same time, student loan debt has risen to $1.5 trillion. The United States spends more per student on education than any other country. In 2014, the Pearson/Economist Intelligence Unit rated US education as 14th best in the world.
In 2015, the Programme for International Student Assessment rated U. S. high school students No. 40 globally in No. 24 in Science and Reading. The President of the National Center on Education and the Economy said of the results "the United States cannot long operate a world-class economy if our workers are, as the OECD statistics show, among the worst-educated in the world". Former U. S. Education Secretary John B. King, Jr. acknowledged the results in conceding U. S. students were well behind their peers. According to a report published by the U. S. News & World Report, of the top ten colleges and universities in the world, eight are American; the US ranks 3rd from the bottom among OECD nations in terms of its' poverty gap, 4th from the bottom in terms of poverty rate. Jonathan Kozol has described these inequalities in K–12 education in Savage Inequalities and The Shame of a Nation: The Restoration of Apartheid Schooling in America. Colonial New England encouraged its towns to support free public schools funded by taxation.
In the early 19th century Massachusetts took the lead in education reform and public education with programs designed by Horace Mann that were emulated across the North. Teachers were specially trained in normal schools and taught the three Rs and history and geography. Public education was at the elementary level in most places. After the Civil War, the cities began building high schools; the South was far behind northern standards on every educational measure and gave weak support to its segregated all-black schools. However northern philanthropy and northern churches provided assistance to private black colleges across the South. Religious denominations across the country set up their private colleges. States opened state universities, but they were quite small until well into the 20th century. In 1823, the Reverend Samuel Read Hall founded the first normal school, the Columbian School in Concord, aimed at improving the quality of the burgeoning common school system by producing more qualified teachers.
In the mid-20th century, the increasing Catholic population led to the formation of parochial schools in the largest cities. Theologically oriented Episcopalian and Jewish bodies on a smaller scale set up their own parochial schools. There were debates over whether tax money could be used to support them, with the answer being no. From about 1876, thirty-nine states passed a constitutional amendment to their state constitutions, called Blaine Amendments after James G. Blaine, one of their chief promoters, forbidding the use of public tax money to fund local parochial schools. States passed laws to make schooling compulsory between 1852 and 1917, they used federal funding designated by the Morrill Land-Grant Colleges Acts of 1862 and 1890 to set up land grant colleges specializing in agriculture and engineering. By 1870, every state had free elementary schools, albeit only in urban centers. According to a 2018 study in the Economic Journal, states were more to adopt compulsory education laws during the Age of Mass Migration if they hosted more European immigrants with lower exposure to civic values.
Following Reconstruction the Tuskegee Normal and Industrial Institute was founded in 1881 as a state college, in Tuskegee, Alabama, to train "Colored Teachers," led by Booker T. Washington, himself a freed slave, his movement spread, leading
Income in the United States
Income in the United States is measured by the United States Department of Commerce either by household or individual. The differences between household and personal income is considerable since 42% of households, the majority of those in the top two quintiles with incomes exceeding $57,658, now have two income earners; this difference becomes apparent when comparing the percentage of households with six figure incomes to that of individuals. In 2006, 17.3% of households had incomes exceeding $100,000, compared to less than 6% of individuals. Overall the median household income was $46,326 in 2006 while the median personal income was $32,140. Income inequality in the United States has increased considerably. Between 1979 and 2004, the mean after-tax income of the top percentile increased 167%, versus 69% for the top quintile overall, 29% for the fourth quintile, 21% for the middle quintile, 17% for the second quintile and 6% for the bottom quintile. While wages for women have increased median earnings of male wage earners have remained stagnant since the late 1970s.
Household income, has risen due the increasing number of households with more than one income earner and women's increased presence in the labor force. Half of the U. S. population lives in poverty or is low-income, according to U. S. Census data. On the other hand, some members of the U. S. population have earned a considerable income: the top earner in 2011, hedge fund manager John Paulson, earned $4.9 billion, according to Business Insider. Compensation in the United States Economy of the United States Income inequality in the United States Socio-economic mobility in the United States Unemployment in the United States United States counties by per capita income Savings rate vs Fed rate from 1954 Historical relationship between the savings rate and the Fed rate - since 1954
Educational attainment in the United States
The educational attainment of the U. S. population is similar to that of many other industrialized countries with the vast majority of the population having completed secondary education and a rising number of college graduates that outnumber high school dropouts. As a whole, the population of the United States is spending more years in formal educational programs; as with income, levels differ by race, household configuration and geography. Overall, the households and demographics featuring the highest educational attainment in the United States are among those with the highest household income and wealth. Thus, while the population as a whole is proceeding further in formal educational programs and educational attainment remain correlated. In 2003, over four-fifths of all adults 25 years or older reported they had completed at least high school, or obtained a GED/high school equivalency certificate. Over one in four adults had attained at least a bachelor's degree. Both of these measures are all time highs.
In 2003, the percentage of the adult population who had completed high school or had not completed high school but obtained a GED increased for the first time since 2000, when it was 84 percent. This increase follows a general trend that the Current Population Survey has shown since educational attainment was first measured in 1947. In 2015, among adults aged 65 and older, 84 percent had either completed high school or more education, or had failed to complete high school but obtained at least a GED certification, compared to 91 percent of adults aged 25 to 34 and 89 percent of adults aged 35 to 44 years or 45 to 64 years. In addition, 27 percent of the population aged 65 and older reported a bachelor's degree or more education compared to 36 percent of adults 25 to 34 years old and 32 percent of adults aged 45 to 64 years. Since 1983 the percentage of people either graduating from high school or failing to complete high school but getting a GED certification has increased from 85% to 88%.
The greatest increases in educational attainment were documented in the 60s and 70s. In the 1950s and much of the 1960s high school graduates constituted about 50% of those considered adults. For young adults aged between 25 and 29, the percentage of either high school graduates or GED obtainers was 50% in 1950 versus 90% today. For the past fifty years, there has been a gap in the educational achievement of males and females in the United States, but which gender has been disadvantaged has fluctuated over the years. In the 1970s and 1980s, data showed girls trailing behind boys in a variety of academic performance measures in test scores in math and science. Data in the last twenty years shows the general trend of girls outperforming boys in academic achievement in terms of class grades across all subjects and college graduation rates, but boys scoring higher on standardized tests and being better represented in the higher-paying and more prestigious STEM fields. Traditionally, girls have outperformed boys in writing.
Although this gap may be minimal in kindergarten, it grows. According to the 2004 National Reading Assessment measured by the US Department of Education, the gap between boys and girls, only noticeable in 4th grade, left boys 14 points behind girls during their 12th grade year. On the 2008 test, female students continued to have higher average reading scores than male students at all three ages; the gap between male and female 4th graders was 7 points in 2008. By 12th grade, there was an 11-point gap between females. On the 2002 National Writing Assessment, boys scored on average 17 points lower than girls in 4th grade; the average gap increased to 21 points by 8th grade and widened to 24 points by senior year in high school. In the more recent 2007 National Assessment of Writing Skills, female students continued to score higher than male students, though margins closed from previous assessments; the average score for female eighth-graders was 20 points higher than males, down 1 point from the 2002 score.
For twelfth-graders, females outscored males by 18 points as opposed to 24 points in 2002. All of these assessments were conducted on a 100-point scale. Overall, women have surpassed men in terms of completion of post-secondary education. In 2015/2016, women earned 61% of associate degrees, 57% of bachelor's degrees, 59% of master's degrees, 53% of doctorates. A similar pattern is seen in high school education where in 2016 7.1% of males, but only 5.1% of females dropped out of high school. In 2015/2016, 56 percent of college students were female and 44 percent were male. From 1990 until 2015, the number of males enrolled in college increased by 41 percent, the number of female students rose by 53 percent. In 2015/2016, 51% of degrees earned by males were bachelor's, higher than that of females for whom 48% of degrees earned were bachelor's degrees; as of 2006, the numbers of both men and women receiving a bachelor's degree has increased but the increasing rate of female college graduates exceeds the increasing rate for males.
In 2007, the United States Census Bureau estimated that 18,423,000 males over the age of 18 held a bachelor's degree, while 20,501,000 females over the age 18 held one. In addition, fewer males held master's degrees: 6,472,000 males compared to 7,283,000 females. However, more men held doctoral degrees than women. 2,033,000 males held professional degrees compared to 1,079,000, 1,678,000 males had received a doctoral degree compared to 817,000 females. In 2015, the United States Census Bureau estimated that 36.1% of individuals between the ages of 25 to 34 had a bachelor's d