On average, each “consumer unit” paid more than $16,000 in taxes last year. This outpaces average spending on food, clothing, education, and health care combined.
The mean for total spending per unit on health care, food, education, and clothing was $16,721.42. This included an average of $8,289.28 on food, $5,451.61 on health care, $1,226.14 on education, and $1,754.39 on apparel.
The mean for total spending per unit on taxes was $16,729.73. This included $8,561.46 in federal income tax, $2,564.14 in state and local income taxes, $2,475.18 in property taxes, $5,565.45 in Social Security deductions, and $105.21 in other taxes, offset by an average stimulus payment of $2,541.71.
In addition to this disturbing tidbit, the new BLS data contains a wealth of other information on American spending habits and offers an interesting glimpse at recovery—and inflation—during the second year of the coronavirus pandemic.