Poverty and Income Security
ReportMarch 19, 2018
In 2014, average household income before accounting for means-tested transfers and federal taxes was $19,000 for the lowest quintile and $281,000 for the highest quintile. After transfers and taxes, those averages were $31,000 and $207,000.
ReportDecember 8, 2016
CBO periodically issues a volume of options—this year’s installment presents 115—that would decrease federal spending or increase federal revenues over the next decade. The report is available both as a PDF and in a searchable format.
ReportJune 8, 2016
In 2013, households in the top, middle, and bottom income quintiles received 53, 14, and 5 percent, respectively, of the nation’s before-tax income and paid 69, 9, and 1 percent, respectively, of federal taxes.
ReportMay 9, 2016
In 2014, 16 percent of men in the United States between the ages of 18 and 34 were jobless or incarcerated, up from 11 percent in 1980. Those numbers and related longer-term trends have significant economic and budgetary implications.
ReportNovember 19, 2015
In 2016, low- and moderate-income workers will face an effective marginal tax rate of 31 percent, on average. Federal individual income and payroll taxes will be the main contributors.
ReportSeptember 25, 2015
Since 1990, real spending for child nutrition programs more than doubled—to $20 billion in 2014. CBO expects that increases in food prices and demographic changes will cause spending to rise further in the future.
ReportSeptember 9, 2015
CBO describes federal housing assistance to low-income households and how it has changed since 2000, provides information about the households that receive assistance, and assesses options for altering that assistance.
ReportMarch 16, 2015
CBO examines several options that would reduce federal spending on the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and the effects they would have on households with different amounts of income.
ReportJanuary 21, 2015
This report examines spending on TANF, how TANF compares to other low-income support programs, and the effects of TANF on employment. CBO also analyzes policy options that would change the program’s funding and requirements for states.
ReportNovember 12, 2014
In 2011, households in the top, middle, and bottom quintiles received 52, 14, and 5 percent of the nation’s before-tax income, respectively; the shares of federal taxes paid by those households were 69, 9, and 1 percent.
ReportFebruary 18, 2014
Raising the minimum wage would increase family income for many low-wage workers, moving some of them out of poverty. But some jobs for low-wage workers would probably be eliminated and the income of those workers would fall substantially.
ReportFebruary 11, 2013
During the past 40 years, federal spending for major means-tested programs and tax credits for low-income households more than tripled as a share of gross domestic product. In 2012, such spending totaled $588 billion.
ReportJanuary 24, 2013
The number and cost of refundable tax credits have grown considerably since 1975. Federal costs (in 2013 dollars) peaked at $238 billion in 2008, but costs will fall to $149 billion in 2013 before reaching $213 billion in 2021.