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More Fun Tax Facts–the Wealthiest 400

Found so much interesting about taxes that wouldn’t fit into our last blog, so had to give you more. Such as the income and taxes of the wealthiest tax return filers.


Top 400 Individual Income Tax Filers in the U.S.

Here’s some fascinating information from the IRS about the people who filed the 400 individual tax returns with the highest adjusted gross income in 2009 (the most recent available):

  • The average adjusted gross income (AGI) for those 400 filers that year was $202 million. How would you like to be getting a weekly paycheck of about $3,884,615.00? Converted to a 40 hour workweek, that’s just shy of a “wage” of $100,000 per hour.
  • Out of more than 140 million individual tax returns filed that year, these 400 returns accounted for more than 1% of the total AGI of the entire nation.
  • Of these 400 returns, 311 reported salary and wage income, averaging about $22 million that year. As incredibly high as that income-from-employment is, for those filers that income was less than 10% of their total adjusted gross income. Most of their income came not from their own work, but rather from their investments working for them.
  • Of these top 400 filers, ALL had:
    • taxable interest income, each averaging about $13 million per year. Must be getting a higher rate than the pittance my savings account is paying.
    • dividend income, each averaging about $26 million per year. Guess if you own a whole lot of shares of stock, you get paid a lot of stock dividends.
    • net capital gains income, each averaging $93 million per year. Beats buying and selling stuff on eBay.
  • About 50 of these 400 filers had C-corporation or farm income, each averaging about $10 million per year.  About half of the 400 filers had partnership or S-corporation net income, each averaging about $84 million per year. May sound naïve, but wonder if they could spare just a bit of those business profits for investing in some jobs for the rest of the folks?
  • For these 400 filers, the reported itemized tax deductions averaged about $32 million, the taxable income averaged about $170 million, and the amount of tax averaged about $41 million per tax return. The total tax paid by these 400 filers was a little less than 2% of all individual income tax paid that year.

Some of these dollar amounts are incomprehensible—the average weekly “paycheck” of nearly $4 million, for example. What WOULD you do with all that money! Just spending the money week after week would be an exhausting job!  I wonder if there are any openings?!

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