Top 400 Taxpayers

The IRS puts out an interesting tax document each year, looking at the returns of the nation’s 400 highest income tax paying people. The most recent year of complete data is 2007, when 143 million individuals filed tax returns.

Some of the data is quite astonishing:

• The top 400 U.S. individual taxpayers got 1.59% of the nation’s household income in 2007 — 3X the p% they got in the 1990s.

• The top 400 paid 2.05% of all individual income taxes in 2007.

• Only 220 of the top 400 were in the top marginal tax bracket.

• Average tax rate of the 400 = 16.6% — the lowest since the IRS began tracking the 400 in 1992.

• Minimum annual income to make the top 400 =  $138.8 million.

• Top 400 reported $137.9 billion in income; they paid $22.9 billion in federal income taxes.

• 81.3% of income was from capital gains, dividends or interest. Salaries and wages? Just 6.5%.

• The top 400 list changes from year to year: 1992-2007, it contained 3,472 different taxpayers (out of a maximum 6400).

Happy tax day to you to!
Thanks to David Wessel for the tip!


The 400 Individual Income Tax Returns Reporting the Highest Adjusted Gross Incomes Each Year, 1992-2007

A Look at the Tax Returns of the Top 400 Taxpayers
David Wessel
WSJ, FEBRUARY 17, 2010

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