Jolie Myers is a former associate producer for Marketplace's Wealth & Poverty desk. 

Myers joined Marketplace in 2009 as a fill-in producer. Before joining the Wealth & Poverty desk, she was the director of the Marketplace Morning Report

Myers is a graduate of Michigan State University where she received her bachelor’s degree in journalism.  A native of Grand Ledge, Mich., Myers now resides in Los Angeles.

 

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Features by Jolie Myers

All new data on what your income says about you

Marketplace's Wealth and Poverty Desk is tracking the connections between what we make and how we live, work and play. And we're doing it with a data interactive tool called Income Upshot. We launched the tool back in September with all kinds of data ... and now we're adding a whole new slate of data. 

Like, how does income line up with political ideology? How much TV do we watch at different incomes? Is there a correlation between gun ownership and income? And, just for fun, do certain astrological signs show up more at certain income levels?

As before, we’re using data from  the U.S. Census Bureau, marketing firms, academic researchers and other sources to explore what someone's income can tell us about their lifestyle and consumer behavior.

A few notes on the data and how we represent it:

Each data set measures income in terms of total household income. Total household income is defined as the total incomes of all people over the age of 15 living in a household. A few data sets in Income Upshot deviate from household income, including new car purchases. The marketing firm that collected the data uses total family income instead of household income. Total family income is defined as the total income of all people over the age of 15 related to the householder and living in the household. The same goes for the data sets on kids, god, political ideology, TV, astrology and guns. The General Social Survey, the source of the data for those sets, asks respondents about their total family incomes, not household incomes. 

Every income you enter falls into an income range, and each income range is defined by the source of the data set. For example, the Census Bureau uses income ranges like $10,000 to $14,999 and $15,000 to $19,999 in measuring home ownership by income. The income ranges vary from data set to data set because the sources for the data are not the same. To see the income ranges for each data set in Income Upshot, click on the information button (the little "i" on the share bar) near the bottom of each data visualization. 

The measure of income by Zip code comes from the Census, which replaces some Zip codes with something call a Zip code Tabulation Area (ZCTA). Almost every Zip code is the same as the census-assigned ZCTA. But if a Zip code-defined area is smaller than two square miles, it will be absorbed into an adjacent ZCTA. If the Zip code you try to enter does not work, try entering a neighboring Zip code instead.

We’ll be updating Income Upshot throughout the year and into the next with new data. What data sets would you like to see? Let us know in the comments section below. 

Income Upshot:
How people at different incomes live, work and play. A new data interactive from Marketplace's Wealth & Poverty Desk. Try the interactive

Income Upshot: Homer Simpson edition

The Income Upshot tool can tell you how people at your income level live, work and play. But you can also find out a lot about other people in the public eye.
Posted In: Homer Simpson, census

A football fantasy: Ranking the NFL with economics

As the pro football season kicks off, the Marketplace Wealth & Poverty Desk is looking beyond passing yards and fumbles. Our W&P power rankings put the NFL team with the highest median income on top.
Posted In: NFL, football, median income, San Francisco, Detroit

Back-to-school: Families spend more on shoes than on pencils, paper

The Retail Federation is out today with a report that looks at projected spending on back-to-school shopping in 2013. Retailers expect the average family to spend $634.78 on clothes and school supplies for kids, down from $688.62 last year (which was a record year for spending).

Back-to-school spending is the second-busiest time of the year for stores, after the holidays. And after retailers reported disappointing June sales figures, a paltry o.4 percent increase from May, analysts said they were hoping for a strong shopping season in the late summer to make up for it. 

The National Retail Federation even breaks down its back-to-school numbers by item -- the average family is spending $90 on pencils, paper and crayons, and $114.39 on shoes. 

The brands that say U.S.A. (but aren't based here)

Several brands that top a list of the 25 most patriotic brands in America aren't exactly American anymore.
Posted In: Jeep, Coke, brands, Wilson, Budweiser, Zippo, Marlboro, John Deere

College athletes team up on a different court

We're expecting movement today in the case that could decide whether college athletes share in the billions of dollars in broadcast and video game revenues
Posted In: NCAA, Sports, college

Record number of moms are breadwinners

A new study from the Pew Research Center finds that four-in-ten families have mothers who are the primary or sole earner.
Posted In: single mothers, economic trends, demographics, pew

Photos: You know you're wealthy when...

People from all backgrounds weigh in on what makes a person wealthy.
Posted In: Wealth and Poverty, wealth

QUIZ: What do you know about poverty in America?

We ran the numbers on poverty in the U.S. -- from the number of Americans on food stamps to the unemployment rate for African-Americans. Take our 10-question quiz to see how much you know.
Posted In: poverty, quiz

Tough Choices: How the poor spend money

Three families living around the poverty line in San Diego tell Marketplace Money what it means to spend money when you don't have a whole lot of it.
Posted In: child poverty, Personal Finance, San Diego, Housing, cars, wealth gap, economic mobility, tough choices, poverty

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