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A Profile of Older Americans: 2004

Income

The median income of older persons in 2003 was $20,363 for males and $11,845 for females.Median money income of all households headed by older people rose by 0.4% from 2002 to 2003; however, this difference was not statistically significant. Households containing families headed by persons 65+ reported a median income in 2003 of $35,310 ($36,797 for non-Hispanic Whites, $28,407 for African-Americans, $34,872 for Asians, and $25,355 for Hispanics). About one of every ten (9.9%) family households with an elderly householder had incomes less than $15,000 and 50.4% had incomes of $35,000 or more (Figure 7).

Figure 7: Percent Distribution by Income: 2003*

Figure 7: The percent Distibution by income in family households with a 65 or older householder in 2003.  under $10,000 3.9 percent, between $10,000 and $14,999 6.0 percent, between $15,000 and $24,999 21.4 percent, between $25,000 and $34,999 18.3 percent, between $35,000 and $49,999 18.0 percent, between $50,000 and 74,999 15.6 percent, and over $75,000 16.9 percent.

$35,310 median for 12.0 million family households 65+  

Percent Distribution of persons 65 and older reporting income.  Under $5,000 6.4 percent, between $5,000 and $9,999 22.9 percent, between $10,000 and $14,999 22.0 percent, between $15,000 and $24,999 21.9 percent, between $25,000 and $34,999 10.4 percent, between $35,000 and $49,999 7.3 percent, and over $50,000 9.1 percent.

$14,664 median for 33.8 million persons 65+ reporting income


For all older persons reporting income in 2002 (33.8 million), 29.3% reported less than $10,000. Only 26.8% reported $25,000 or more. The median income reported was $14,664.

For one-third of Americans over 65, Social Security benefits constitute 90% of their income. The major other sources of income as reported by the Social Security Administration for older persons in 2002 were income from assets (reported by 55%), private pensions (reported by 29%), government employee pensions (reported by 14%), and earnings (reported by 22%).

(Based on data from Current Population Survey, Annual Social and Economic Supplement , "Income, Poverty, and health Insurance Coverage in the United States: 2003," P60‑226, issued August, 2003,  by the U.S. Bureau of the Census, related Census detailed tables on the Census Bureau website, and from Fast Facts and Figures About Social Security, 2004, Social Security Administration)

 

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