According to the most recent estimates of the Bureau of the Census, part of the U.S. Department of Commerce's Social and Economic Statistics Administration, the median money income of families in the United States rose to $11,120 in 1972, an increase of about 8.1 percent over 1971. Although some of this increase was eroded by rising prices, the net gain in real purchasing power was still notable. After adjusting for the rise in prices last year, the 1972 median in terms of constant dollars increased by about 4.6 percent over the 1971 median.
The median income of Negro families was $6,860 or about 59 percent of the median income of white families of $11,550. Statistically, this ratio is not significantly different from that of 1971. For Negro families, the 1972 median was significantly higher than the 1971 median of $6,440.
Of the 54.4 million families in the United States in March 1973, 30.7 million or 56.4 percent received incomes of $10,000 or more in 1972. There were 9.1 million families (16.8 percent) with icomes between $7,000 and $10,000; 5.6 million families (10.2 percent) with incomes between $5,000 and $7,000; and 9.0 million families (16.6 percent) with incomes below $5,000 in 1972.
Census statistics date back to 1790 and reflect the growth and change of the United States. Past census reports contain some terms that today’s readers may consider obsolete and inappropriate. As part of our goal to be open and transparent with the public, we are improving access to all Census Bureau original publications and statistics, which serve as a guide to the nation's history.