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June 2003, Vol. 126, No.6
Retirement expenditures for Whites, Blacks, and persons of Hispanic origin
This article looks at the demographics and expenditures of retirees by three large groups—Hispanics, African-Americans, and Whites.1 In this article, the terms "Blacks" and "African-Americans" will be used interchangeably. Due to the relationship between income and expenditure level—people with high incomes tend to spend more—this study uses the shares of total expenditures that are spent on the various components to compare differences in spending patterns among the groups.
The data used in this article are from the Consumer Expenditure Interview Survey from the first quarter of 1996 through the first quarter of 2001. The sample includes 833 Hispanic, 1,364 African-American, and 14,268 White consumer units.2 For the purpose of this study, the race/ethnic group of the consumer unit is determined by the reference person. Similarly, only the reference person needs to be retired to qualify a husband-and-wife consumer unit as retired. Retirement is often defined with reference to two characteristics: nonparticipation in the paid labor force and receipt of income from pensions, Social Security, and other retirement plans. However, for this article, the respondents had only to report that they were retired.
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1 Due to the small number of CU surveyed, this study does not include Asians, American Indians, Pacific Islanders, Aleuts, and Eskimos.
2 At the time the CE data used here were collected, only one race could be selected by a respondent. White means "White, non-Hispanic." Black means "Black, non-Hispanic."
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Consumer Expenditure Survey
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