Introducing the Distributional Financial Accounts of the United States

60 Pages Posted: 26 Mar 2019

See all articles by Michael Batty

Michael Batty

Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System

Jesse Bricker

Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System

Joseph Briggs

Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System

Elizabeth Holmquist

Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System

Susan Hume McIntosh

Financial Account Project at the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve

Kevin B. Moore

Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System

Eric Reed Nielsen

Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System

Sarah Reber

Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System

Molly Shatto

Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System

Kamila Sommer

Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System

Tom Sweeney

Indiana University Bloomington

Alice Henriques

Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System

Date Written: 2019-03-22

Abstract

This paper describes the construction of the Distributional Financial Accounts (DFAs), a new dataset containing quarterly estimates of the distribution of U.S. household wealth since 1989, and provides the first look at the resulting data. The DFAs build on two existing Federal Reserve Board statistical products --- quarterly aggregate measures of household wealth from the Financial Accounts of the United States and triennial wealth distribution measures from the Survey of Consumer Finances --- to incorporate distributional information into a national accounting framework. The DFAs complement other existing sources of data on the wealth distribution by using a more comprehensive measure of household wealth and by providing quarterly data on a timely basis. We encourage policymakers, researchers, and other interested parties to use the DFAs to help understand issues related to the distribution of U.S. household wealth.

Keywords: Economic data, Economic measurement, Household economics, Inequality, National accounts, Wealth distribution, Wealth dynamics

JEL Classification: N3, E01, H5, H31

Suggested Citation

Batty, Michael and Bricker, Jesse and Briggs, Joseph and Holmquist, Elizabeth and Hume McIntosh, Susan and Moore, Kevin B. and Nielsen, Eric Reed and Reber, Sarah and Shatto, Molly and Sommer, Kamila and Sweeney, Tom and Henriques, Alice, Introducing the Distributional Financial Accounts of the United States (2019-03-22). FEDS Working Paper No. 2019-017. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3358906 or http://dx.doi.org/10.17016/FEDS.2019.017

Michael Batty (Contact Author)

Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System

20th Street and Constitution Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20551
United States

Jesse Bricker

Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System ( email )

20th Street and Constitution Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20551
United States

Joseph Briggs

Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System

20th Street and Constitution Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20551
United States

Elizabeth Holmquist

Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System ( email )

20th Street and Constitution Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20551
United States

Susan Hume McIntosh

Financial Account Project at the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve ( email )

20th Street and Constitution Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20551
United States

Kevin B. Moore

Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System ( email )

20th Street and Constitution Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20551
United States

Eric Reed Nielsen

Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System ( email )

20th Street and Constitution Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20551
United States

Sarah Reber

Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System

20th Street and Constitution Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20551
United States

Molly Shatto

Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System

20th Street and Constitution Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20551
United States

Kamila Sommer

Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System ( email )

20th Street and Constitution Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20551
United States

Tom Sweeney

Indiana University Bloomington

100 South Indiana Ave.
Bloomington, IN 47405
United States

Alice Henriques

Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System ( email )

20th Street and Constitution Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20551
United States

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