Hello, I downloaded ACS USA data with R. My PERWT column is one or two digits. Are there 2 implied decimal places and how many digits are there supposed to be? Am I to apply the PERWT to all of the variables?

PERWT is a person-level weight that should be used whenever conducting person-level analyses with IPUMS USA data. HHWT is the household-level weight that should be used when analyzing household-level data. PERWT is a 6-digit numeric variable with two implied decimals. For example, a PERWT value of 035281 should be interpreted as 352.81.

PERWT should not be appearing as a one or two digit variable. If you can provide some more information about how you are opening and viewing your sample, and about the sample itself, I should be able to provide more targeted help.

Hello, I am viewing through R and also in Excel after exporting the file. In both cases the PERWT is only 1 or 2 digits. Please advise. I am new to this process. I did a data request for an extract through your system and used the R code. Thank you.

The sample is for Dallas, Texas.

I looked into this and it seems that while PERWT can be up to 6 digits wide, the values of PERWT are not always 6 digits wide. Depending on how you read it into your statistical software package, we also already apply the decimals to the values of the variable for you. So the values you are seeing in your dataset are correct and already adjusted for the two implied decimal places. I see the same values of PERWT that you see when opening a similar extract into Stata as well, and I confirmed that these are the correct values in the original data.

I hope this helps clear things up. You can use PERWT as you see it in your data.

Hello,

Thank you very much for the clarification.