Tax Distribution by Quintile, Illustrated Edition

A while back, on The Other Blog, one Brian Lester inquired about the distribution of state & local tax burdens.  Having nothing better to do with my time, I grabbed a report from the Tax Foundation, and ran the calculations that resulted in the following tables & graphs.

Each graph gives the effective per-household tax rate by quintiles, lowest to highest.  The table following each figure lists the numerical values displayed by said figure.

The main difference between Figs. 1 & 2 is the denominator.  For Fig. 1, it’s “Household Market Income”, a measure that excludes government transfers.  Fig. 2 uses “Comprehensive Household Income”, which includes both the net income from government transfers.  IOW, Figs. 1 & 2 give tax burdens “before” and “after” governmental wealth-redistribution programs.

Figure 1

quintiles3Table 1

quintiles1Figure 2

quintiles4Table 2


Aggregate quantities for “Household Market Income” & “Comprehensive Household Income” taken from Table 4, p. 18 of the aforementioned report.  Income per household calculated using the number of households in each quintile, on Table 3, p. 17.  Per-household federal and state/local tax burdens taken from Fig. 1, p. 22.


2 Responses to “Tax Distribution by Quintile, Illustrated Edition”

  1. jpapanikol Says:

    So, your 5th quintile is the richest 20%? Or is it the 1st quintile?

  2. Avenging Sword Says:

    As stated above, “Each graph gives the effective per-household tax rate by quintiles, lowest to highest.” So first quintile is the lowest, and fifth is the highest.

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