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June 2006, Vol. 129, No. 6
Income data quality issues in the CPS
Daniel H. Weinberg
Chief, Center for Economic Studies and chief economist at the U.S. Census Bureau.
The views expressed on technical issues are those of the author and not necessarily those of the U.S. Census Bureau.
The Annual Social and Economic Supplement to the Current Population Survey (CPS ASEC) measures income and poverty in the United States. Based on comparisons to the National Income and Product Accounts, researchers suggest that income is underreported on the CPS ASEC, thus the estimated poverty rate is too high. This article focuses on the quality of the CPS ASEC. A close look into the questionnaire design, data collection and preparation, and postcollection data processing suggests areas for improvement. The article proposes a set of research projects that could be used to remedy many of the deficiencies identified and encourage discussion among interested researchers.
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Related BLS programs
Labor Force Statistics from the Current Population Survey
poverty measures: accounting for medical expenditures—Aug.
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