Breakdown of U.S. household expenses

September 24, 2009

The chart below shows the breakdown of the average U.S. household yearly expenditure in 2007. I removed the “pensions and social security” category from the total, since this category should be seen as a tax, a benefit or savings rather than as an expense. I also carried out some grouping of expenditure categories for visual clarity. Some of the low expense categories, for example, were grouped under the heading “other” together with the category “miscellaneous”.

When comparing expenditure patterns for higher and lower income households (under $70,000 vs. over $70,000), it turned out that the proportions allocated to each of the categories are quite stable – with differences of no more than 2% in each category, and no obvious trends.

Data source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, Consumer Expenditure Survey.

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