Analyzing 2008 Tax Returns

Floyd Norris digs up the dirt on US income, via the SOI Tax Stats of the IRS:

– In 2008, Americans reported $8.4 trillion in total income, down 4.6% 2007.

– Inflation adjusted, that is down 8.4% — the sharpest decline in total income since 1990.

– Biggest source of decline: Falls in Investment Income and sharp drops in Capital Gains.

– total wage and salary income was +1.9%; adjusted for inflation, it was -1.9%.

– Tax returns of $1 million plus fell by 22% to 321,294.

– 13,480 tax returns that reported income of more than $10 million — 36% smaller than the prior year.

– In the above $10m+ group, of the $400 billion in income was reported, only 19% came from wages and salaries, much less than cap gains (despite bad stock market).

– Tax returns with negative income (realized losses > than total income) leaped 31% to 2.5 million.

– 462 returns that reported some income from gambling, totaling 2.6 billion, or $5.6 million per return (average).

Fascinating stuff . . .



In ’08 Downturn, Some Managed to Eke Out Millions
NYT, July 23, 2010

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