posted July 20, 2011
Release of DataFerrett with new features to access 2005-2009 ACS 5-Year Summary File
Following a successful 3 week test in the Beta version of DataFerrett, the U.S. Census Bureau released an updated version of DataFerrett into production. DataFerrett is a free online tool that can analyze and extract data from many sources, including the ACS Summary File. The updated version of DataFerrett now offers a new mapping feature, corrections to some known bugs and access to the following additional summary levels from the 2005-2009 ACS 5-year Summary File.
posted January 11, 2011
ACS 3-year estimates released January 11
New tables available
posted December 14, 2010
First-ever ACS 5-year estimates released December 14
Browse our additional New and Notable items below or get detailed information on where to find the different data products.
2005-2009 ACS 5-year maps
The Census Bureau has released new county-level maps based on the 2005-2009 ACS 5-year estimates. All of the topics also have Census 2000 maps and data to determine statistical significance.
Select geographies unavailable on American FactFinder
The ACS staff determined that we are unable to release a small number of 2005-2009 ACS 5-year geographies that were scheduled for AFF release in January 2011. All subject tables will not be published on AFF for two summary levels:
The missing geographies are available on the FTP site in comma-separated values (CSV).
Block group data available only in the Summary File
Detailed American Community Survey tables for block groups will only be included in the Summary File product; they will not be published in American FactFinder. Visit the Summary File page for more information.
Tables available only in the Summary File or as CSV files
Vintage of geographic boundaries
The 2005-2009 ACS 5-year estimates for legal areas are based on boundaries as of January 1, 2009 as reported to the Census Bureau by local stakeholders through the Boundary and Annexation Survey (BAS). Statistical area boundaries published in the 2005-2009 ACS 5-year estimates are defined using Census 2000 definitions. Visit our Geography page to learn more.
posted December 8, 2010
Data products availability
The 2005-2009 ACS 5-year data products
will not include
Get detailed information on where to find the different data products.
The 2005-2009 ACS 5-year estimates include estimates on most (but not all) topics included in the survey. Several topics that were added or modified in 2008 and 2009 are not included in these 5-year estimates. These include Bachelor's field of degree, disability, marital history, health insurance coverage, and service-connected disability status and ratings. The first 5-year estimates for these topics will be available in the 2013 release of the 2008-2012 5-year estimates (except for Bachelor's field of degree, which will be available in the 2014 release of the 2009-2013 estimates). For a complete list of topics covered on the ACS questionnaire, browse Subjects included in the American Community Survey.
posted September 28, 2010
For the release of the 2009 ACS 1-year estimates, the Census Bureau produced reports for the American Community Survey Briefs series -- short reports on specific topics based on the newly released data.
New weighting methodology for data products
As a result of concerns raised about the ACS estimates of total and subgroup population in some incorporated places, the ACS has adopted subcounty total population controls. This change in methodology will affect the ACS estimate of the total number of people in a particular location, but the distribution of characteristics for the most part remains comparable across years. This change applies to the 2009 ACS 1-year estimates and all future ACS 1-year, 3-year, and 5-year estimates.
The basic method is to add a procedure that controls for total population at the subcounty level while controlling for total population and additional demographic characteristics at the county level. The controls for both the subcounty and county level come from the Population Estimates Program (PEP) which is released annually by the Census Bureau. Subcounty estimates used to construct weights in the multiyear ACS products rely on an average of PEP’s subcounty estimates over the 3- or 5-year period. In general, one should expect very close agreement between the ACS estimates and the PEP estimates, but they may not be exactly equal. As with any methodological change, a small number of places may observe changes in the distribution of characteristics that are the result of the new methods. To learn more about possible impacts on characteristics, see the Research Note [PDF 28KB] on this new method.
Revised data from the 2008 ACS
Due to the discovery of several errors, corrected 2008 data appear in the 2009 ACS 1-year Comparison Profiles and the ACS briefs. Corrected 2008 data will also be used to produce the 2005-2009 ACS 5-year and 2007-2009 ACS 3-year data products as well as future multiyear products. We do not plan to rerelease any of the existing 1-year or 3-year ACS tables that include 2008 data on American FactFinder, or any of the ACS PUMS files that include 2008 data. For more information, please refer to the errata notes.
The 2009 ACS 1-year release will be the first 1-year ACS release to include all metropolitan statistical areas. In order to provide complete metro area coverage the Census Bureau decided to publish 1-year data for the Carson City, Nevada and Lewiston, Idaho-Washington Metropolitan Statistical Areas even though they do not yet meet the 65,000 population threshold.
Data users may also notice that the imputation rates for most ACS variables are lower in 2009 than in 2008. Two factors account for this change. In 2009 the ACS program resumed full Failed Edit Follow-Up (FEFU) operations after a partial suspension in 2008. In FEFU, households who have returned a mail form but whose data failed a completeness check are called to collect the missing data. This operation is designed to improve the final quality of mail-returned questionnaires. In addition, we introduced a computer-assisted instrument for group quarter person interviews in 2009 that resulted in more complete group quarter data collection.
New tables for the 2009 ACS 1-year release
See details on new and modified tables in Product Changes
[PDF] or denotes a file in Adobe’s Portable Document Format. To view the file, you will need the Adobe® Reader® available free from Adobe. [Excel] or the letters [xls] indicate a document is in the Microsoft® Excel® Spreadsheet Format (XLS). To view the file, you will need the Microsoft® Excel® Viewer available for free from Microsoft®. This symbol indicates a link to a non-government web site. Our linking to these sites does not constitute an endorsement of any products, services or the information found on them. Once you link to another site you are subject to the policies of the new site.