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Wealth and Asset Ownership

Source and Accuracy of the Estimates: 1998 and 2000

Statistics from surveys are subject to sampling and nonsampling error. All comparisons presented in this report have taken sampling error into account and are significant at the 90-percent confidence level. This means the 90-percent confidence interval for the difference between the estimates being compared does not include zero. Nonsampling errors in surveys may be attributed to a variety of sources, such as how the survey was designed, how respondents interpret questions, how able and willing respondents are to provide correct answers, and how accurately the answers are coded and classified. The Census Bureau employs quality control procedures throughout the production process including the overall design of surveys, the wording of questions, review of the work of interviewers and coders, and statistical review of reports to minimize these errors.

The Survey of Income and Program Participation weighting procedure uses ratio estimation, whereby sample estimates are adjusted to independent estimates of the national population by age, race, sex, and Hispanic origin. This weighting partially corrects for bias due to undercoverage, but biases may still be present when people who are missed by the survey differ from those interviewed in ways other than the age, race, sex, and Hispanic origin. How this weighting procedure affects other variables in the survey is not precisely known. All of these considerations affect comparisons across different surveys or data sources.

For further information on the source of the data and accuracy of the estimates including standard errors and confidence intervals, go to or contact Reid Rottach of the Census Bureau Demographic Statistical Methods Division on the Internet at

For further information on statistical standards and the computation and use of standard errors, contact Charles D. Sissel, Demographic Statistical Methods Division, at (301) 763-5922,

Contact the Demographic Call Center Staff at 301-763-2422 or 1-866-758-1060 (toll free) or visit for further information on Wealth and Asset Ownership Data.

Source: U.S. Census Bureau, Housing and Household Economic Statistics Division
Last Revised: October 31, 2011