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U.S. Census Bureau News

01/21/16: U.S. Census Bureau Releases 2010-2014 American Community Survey 5-Year PUMS Files

We are pleased to announce the release of the 2010-2014 American Community Survey (ACS) 5-year Public Use Microdata Sample (PUMS) files.  

The ACS 5-year PUMS files show the full range of population and housing unit responses collected on individual ACS questionnaires for a subsample of ACS housing units and group quarters persons (approximately five percent of the United States population). 

PUMS files allow data users to conduct a custom analysis, though the files also tend to be more complicated to use. Working with PUMS data generally involves downloading large datasets onto a local computer and analyzing them using statistical software such as R, SPSS, Stata, or SAS.

PUMS data can be accessed via the ACS FTP site, American FactFinder, or via the Census Bureau's DataFerrett tool. (This tool is particularly useful for researchers who need a quick statistic or do not have access to statistical software.)

For more information, explore the new 2010-2014 ACS 5-year PUMS Technical Documentation:

  • PUMS ReadMe: Information about geography and variable changes, as well as guidance for novice users.
  • Code Lists: This document contains the detailed codes for variables that contain a large number of coded responses, such as ancestry and occupation.
  • Subjects in the PUMS: A list of broad topics included in each of the housing and population record files.
  • Data Dictionary: Full listing of all variables (and values) included in each of the housing and population record files.
  • Accuracy of the PUMS: Explanation of the sample design, estimation methodology, and accuracy of the data.
  • PUMS Estimates for User Verification: If users have doubts about whether they are correctly computing estimates, they can attempt to reproduce these estimates (using the replicate weight method).

The ACS provides reliable statistics that are used to make informed decisions about the future. These statistics are required by all levels of government to manage or evaluate a wide range of programs, but are also useful for research, business, education, journalism, and advocacy. If you have questions about this survey, please call our Customer Services Center on 1-800-923-8282.   
Thank you,
American Community Survey Office 
U.S. Census Bureau

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Office: 404-270-5629
Fax: 404-270-5632

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