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Federal income tax liability, before credits


99999999 = N.I.U. (Not in Universe).


FEDTAX reports the federal income tax liability for an individual or for a couple filing a joint tax return. The federal income tax on personal income provides for national programs such as defense, foreign affairs, law enforcement, and interest on the national debt. "Federal income tax liability" means the amount of federal income tax, excluding any federal minimum alternative tax, taxpayers are required to pay. A value of "00000" for this variable indicates no federal income tax liability.

Beginning in 2005, FEDTAXAC is added to the data, which indicates the amount of federal tax liability, after tax credits are deducted. On the other hand, FEDTAX indicates the amount of federal tax liability, before tax credits are deducted. The credits include the additional child tax credit and the earned income tax credit.

FEDTAX, like other tax-related variables included in the ASEC CPS (ADJGINC, CAPGAIN, CAPLOSS, EITCRED, FEDRETIR, FICA, FILESTAT, MARGTAX, STATETAX, TAXINC, and household level variable PROPTAX) was not determined by direct questioning of respondents. Rather, values for these variables come from the Census Bureau's tax model, which simulates individual tax returns to produce estimates of federal, state, and payroll taxes. The model incorporates information from non-CPS sources, such as the Internal Revenue Service's Statistics of Income series, the American Housing Survey, and the State Tax Handbook. For more information about the model, see Current Population Reports, Series P60-18RD. The IPUMS-CPS staff welcomes further information from users about the interpretation of this variable or other tax-related variables in the ASEC CPS.

Amounts for FEDTAX are expressed in dollars of the given year, rather than in constant dollars adjusted for inflation. Users can adjust for inflation using Consumer Price Index adjustment factors.


Apart from the effects of inflation, FEDTAX is largely comparable over time. Comparability may, however, be limited by changes in the Census Bureau's tax model. The Bureau implemented a new model to produce tax estimates in 2004, and the previous tax model was updated annually to account for changes in marginal tax rates.


  • Persons age 15+.


Years Jan Feb ASEC Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
1992 – 2023 - - X - - - - - - - - -


This variable has no flags.